They’ve been an item for over a decade, they share two young children and both have busy work schedules. So you wouldn’t blame Kristen Bell and Dax Shepard for letting their love life slide. But the Frozen star has hinted that things are still very much alive in the bedroom – and it’s the strangest thing that works for her.
Bell was born and raised in Huntington Woods, Michigan, on the outskirts of Detroit. It was to be 27 years before she met her future husband, Dax Shepard. But he, too, was born in a northern suburb of the city, Highland Township in Oakland County.
As he grew up, Shepard lived in several areas of suburban Detroit. However, the place he spent most time was Walled Lake, Michigan, less than an hour by car from Bell’s household. As well as a geographical closeness, there was another similarity to their childhoods. Bell’s parents divorced when she was two, Shepard’s when he was three.
What’s more, both actors say that growing up, they liked making people laugh. Shepard reported that he developed a reputation as the class jester at school. Similarly, Bell said in a November 2019 interview on TV show Entertainment Tonight: “I definitely got a high from making people laugh, as I was a weird kid.
Bell continued, “I was weird and quirky before I realized that goofy was comedy, and that was a skill I could hone. I was just, like, weird.” To prove her point, she hilariously described just what this peculiarity entailed. And it certainly doesn’t disappoint in the bizarre stakes.
“I’d ask for my dinner next to the dog dish, and I’d eat it with my face as I liked the dog so much more than I liked everyone else,” she recounted. “My mom was like, ‘Great, that’s what we got. We love her!’” The young Bell became hooked on the feeling that entertaining people gave her.
Bell added, “I realized that owning that [quirkiness] made people giggle, and when you make people giggle, to me there’s no better feeling in the world, it’s like a hit.” She went on: “I just wanted to do it more and more and more, and I kind of owned how quirky I could be and tried to use it whenever possible.”
So far, so similar. But as they got older, Bell and Shepard took different paths in life. On one hand, Bell was brought up as a committed Christian, worked hard and did well at school. “She’s charitable and philanthropic and rescues dogs,” Shepard said of his wife in a 2012 interview with Playboy magazine.
Meanwhile, Shepard developed into a different kind of person. From the age of 18, he admits he had a substance abuse problem. In September 2004, at the age of 29, he finally ditched the booze. “All the things I’d done were terrifying to her,” he told Playboy, referring to how his new girlfriend was to feel about his wilder life experiences.
Unsurprisingly given their differences, they didn’t hit it off when they first met. It was in 2007 at the birthday party of a mutual friend. On Shepard’s part, her boundless enthusiasm for life grated on his edgier outlook. Speaking to Good Housekeeping magazine in 2015 he said: “When I met her and her friends, I was suspicious of their unbridled happiness.”
Shepard noted, “I thought, ‘Something stinks here; they’re in a cult.’” As for Bell, she thought he was too fond of the sound of his own voice. She told TV program Sunday TODAY in November 2019, “I was like, ‘This guy can talk. I didn’t know who he was. I was like, maybe one of the guys from Jackass or something?… and then we left.”
It was an inauspicious beginning with zero sign of romance. “There were no sparks whatsoever. None,” Bell affirmed in the Sunday TODAY interview. However, things began to turn around when their paths crossed for a second time soon afterwards.
“Two weeks later we both met at a hockey game,” Bell explained. “Started to flirt, left, and then a day after that I get a text that says, ‘Hi my name is Dax. I violated your privacy and got your number… How do you feel about that?’”
This time, the attraction was mutual and they became an item. That wasn’t to say the pair didn’t still have different outlooks. In January 2017, Shepard shared a cute picture on Instagram from the early days of their dating. In the snap, a youthful Bell sits on his knee on a couch.
Shepard captioned the picture: “Nine years ago. And unfortunately that bottom lip isn’t from injections, it’s Skoal. That’s right, I landed @kristenanniebell while in the throes of a nasty dip habit. Thanks for being an optimist, honey.” Skoal is a kind of dipping tobacco that is placed between the lip and the gum.
So despite the fact that sparks were now well and truly flying, it wasn’t all plain sailing in the early days of their relationship. “Good girl” Bell was suspicious of whether a partner with such colorful life experiences would stay the course.
Shepard shone a torch on the early days of their relationship in the 2012 interview with Playboy. “She had a hard time believing I would ever be able to stay married and monogamous and a father and all those things,” he said. “For the first year-and-a-half we were together that was what we battled over almost weekly.”
In fact, the couple embarked upon an unusual course of action. At the beginning of the relationship, they chose to attend couples therapy, figuring it was better sooner rather than later. “There were hurdles, things she didn’t trust about me, things I didn’t trust about her,” Shepard told Good Housekeeping in 2015.
Shepard added, “I just kept going back to ‘This person has the thing I want, and I have to figure out how we can exist peacefully.’ So we started [seeing a therapist together] right away.” He went on, “In my previous relationship, we went to couples therapy at the end, and that’s often too late.”
Whatever they were doing seemed to work. Thirteen years later the couple has one of the most enduring relationships in Hollywood. They still share a sense of fun and goofiness. Part of that is a mutual obsession with the TV sensation Game of Thrones.
In fact, they love the show so much that back in 2017, they put together a video in honor of it. Dressing up as the main characters, they appeared to play instruments along to the opening credits. Shepard captioned the video: “Words cannot express our horniness for the Game of Thrones premier. Hopefully this video will.”
They went on to throw the most incredible GOT-themed party for the final season. Again not missing an opportunity to dress up, they invited friends around to join in the fun. The resulting pictures, which Bell posted on her Instagram, are something to behold.
Despite getting engaged in 2010, the cute couple said they wouldn’t get hitched until same-sex marriage was legalized in California. Nonetheless, they welcomed a daughter, Lincoln, in 2013. When the law preventing same-sex marriage was ruled unconstitutional, Bell proposed to Shepard via Twitter. They married seven months after Lincoln’s birth.
In 2014, another daughter, Delta, was born. All the while the two actors have juggled busy careers, even working together on movies CHiPS, Hit and Run and When in Rome. Among a full roster of other work, Bell is the voice of Princess Anna in the smash hit movie Frozen and its newly-released sequel. Shepard, meanwhile, has been a regular on prank TV show Punk’d and since 2018 has hosted podcast Armchair Expert.
With so much going on, you might think that getting intimate was the last thing on their minds. But during a November 2019 press junket for Frozen II, Bell reveals when she finds her husband most attractive – and the answer is a surprise to everyone.
The actress was being interviewed for Entertainment Tonight alongside her Frozen co-star Idina Menzel. Presenter Keltie Knight explains that in the new movie, main character Kristoff tries to profess his love for Anna but “it’s not going great.” Which leads to the question – what is the way that you like your significant other to show you love?
Bell immediately jumps in with her interpretation of the question: “What’s our love language?” And while Menzel seems to take a few moments to reflect on her answer, Bell is there straight away. “I know mine. Acts of service are huge for me… I mean we’re 13 years in, but he’s gotten it now.”
The star elaborates on something that had happened that very morning: “He woke up ten minutes after I did and I was scrambling to get out of the house. He was, like, rising out of bed and he said: ‘Is there anything I can do to get you out of the house on time?’ And I was like, ‘Are you trying to make me horny right now?’”
While the presenter’s jaw drops, Bell’s co-star Menzel displays a similar innocent disposition to her movie counterpart Princess Elsa. She counters: “I thought you meant he’d booked a trip to Africa and you were going to help the kids…”
Bell, who comes across in the interview as having the same cheeky side as her Frozen character Anna, replies: “Oh well, that’s huge too, acts of service to other people are also very sexy. But acts of service to me… if you pour your coffee and hand me a mug as well, I’m there.”
The vegan and philanthropist went on to explain that to her, kindness and consideration were more important than money and power. She said: “I don’t care how much money you have… There’s a lot of different acts of service that would qualify under that umbrella.”
Meanwhile, not to be outdone, Menzel cuts in with what her husband does that scores him points. “He really looks me straight in the eyes, and I really find that extremely sexy and disarming but in a great way. He’s a therapist too. So I just feel really seen all the time. I can’t get away with anything but I feel seen and really protected.”
As they all nod in agreement, Menzel continues: “I feel as women we take hold of our lives, we do do do. We’re very independent and controlling – I’m talking for myself. It’s nice when you have a man in your life who is there and protects you and can take care of things once in a while. That’s okay, even from a feminist.”
From the pictures on her Instagram feed, it’s clear that Bell has found someone who is taking care of her. In a sweet snap taken by their daughter in September 2019, Bell and Shepard lie snuggling up on the sofa. The married couple seem to have been caught off-guard by the picture, making it all the more adorable.
In another heart-melting picture, Bell and Shepard hug each other while wearing matching Halloween pajamas. The actress captioned the image with two pumpkin emojis and one orange, followed by “(Jammies @happyhannas).” The picture has over a million likes from their delighted fans.
It seems to be the normality of this relatable couple that is part of their appeal. Next to the picture, vns_sugar_chivette commented: “Can I just tell you that my first thought when I looked at this was ‘Thank God they’ve got crap on the floor.’ Also, cute jams.”
They’ve been honest in the past about having to work hard at their relationship in order to keep it alive. Shepard said in an interview with TV show TODAY in 2017, “You have to be maintaining the relationship, and it is work. And it’s often uncomfortable work, but it needs doing or we won’t stay together.”
Their low-key wedding dovetails with their down-to-earth outlook – the couple got married “in a tiny room in the Beverly Hills courthouse” Bell told CBS, while maintaining, “it was still one of the best days of my life.” The couple had no party, no guests, and the sum total expenditure of the day was just $142.
Thankfully, for their legions of fans it looks like these two aren’t going their separate ways any time soon. And they’re keeping things real, with a ban on photos of their two young daughters. Together, they support the “No Kids” stance against paparazzi pictures of children whose parents are in the public eye.
Luckily for us, though, the two can’t resist posting cute pictures of the family together, with their daughters’ faces turned away or obscured. Shepard captioned this one: “Denim on denim on denim on denim on denim on denim on denim gawking at a hot rod wagon.” Whatever you’re doing guys, keep doing it.