Angela Bassett
Credit: Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

It’s rare for a celebrity couple to say, “23 years strong and counting,” but Angela Bassett and husband Courtney B. Vance could claim the epithet. The actress and activist has revealed her secret to a lasting marriage in an interview with E! Online.

“[Choose] someone you like, [with whom] you share a similar perspective and belief system.”

Bassett stressed the importance of realizing that a couple is still composed of two different people with different thoughts and feelings, “Because you’re not clones. So you’re going to, you know, clash and differ along the way. But if they believe in it and you know how to apologize when need be, they do as well.”

Bassett and her husband met at Yale Drama School and were friends first before their paths crossed again 14 years later and they reconnected. Bassett says she fell in love with Vance because of his passion and the way he treats other people. They went on to get married in 1997 and their twin son and daughter, Bronwyn and Slater, were born in 2006 with the help of a surrogate.

Angela Bassett
Courtney B. Vance and Angela Bassett attend the 91st Annual Academy Awards at Hollywood and Highland on February 24, 2019 in Hollywood, California. Credit:  Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

“There’s changes in life. You know, we change physically. But you’ve got that heart, you know, being sacrificial, they’re there for you, got your back.”

When asked how the couple has maintained their successful careers as actors over such a long time, Bassett offered: “A lot of talent, a little luck, a lot of hard work, and an availability for trying new things.” Her mantra for career success could easily double as the formula to her successful relationship.

The couple have embarked on Bassett Vance Productions, a production company aimed at bringing diverse stories and talent to the big screen. “This whole idea of representation, you know, it’s not a sprint, as they say. It’s a marathon. And we’re in it for the long haul.”

Bassett recently wowed at the Oscars in a stunning red Alberta Ferretti gown and striking blue eyeshadow look.