THE recent engagement of former top model Jerry Hall to media tycoon Rupert Murdoch, has smudged that clichéd image of the much-younger attractive woman hitching herself to an ageing billionaire.
She will be 60 in July and he 85 in March and the revelation of their whirlwind four-month romance has been a welcome celebrity distraction for those of us of a similar vintage.
Whether you viewed their union as a convenient partnership of glamour and money, or a genuine meeting of like minds and hearts, there was no shortage of social media commentary once the news broke.
Most people genuinely couldn’t care less about the lives of the rich and famous — so far out of reach are they from our own. But in a world where youth and beauty normally grabs the limelight and many women aged over 50 bemoan being ‘invisible’, it’s refreshing to see Hall kick up dust on this belief, albeit with her designer high heels, as she approaches the big Six O.
Having lead an extraordinary life — from escaping as a 16-year-old from a violent home in Texas to featuring on 40 Vogue covers, as a top model — and spending more than two decades with one of the most famous rock stars in the world, Mick Jagger, she learnt very quickly to move and groove among the rich and famous.
She is of course independently wealthy — having reached a reported £10million (€12.9m) settlement when she split with Jagger 16 years ago, but it has now emerged that the mother of his four children, aged 18 to 31, must vacate the 26-room house they shared in Richmond, London, when she reaches 65, or if she co-habits or marries.
Although she hasn’t exactly been a shrinking violet since she split from Jagger, her marriage to Murdoch will put her right back in the dizzy nucleus of that world of wealth, power, and glamour she knew so well as a younger woman.
Video clips of herself and Murdoch at the Golden Globes ceremony, show her doing what she knows best, for the photographers — giving that sideways model pose in a classy black number and flashing her toothy red-lipped smile.
Meanwhile, Michael Wolff, biographer of the thrice-married Murdoch, has stated the media mogul has been dominated at times in his life by a “search for sex, glamour, companionship — he has very much sought all three together”.
If those comments are to be believed, then a simple deduction would mean this is a marriage made in heaven — a meeting of like-minded ambitions, whatever about their hearts. And in the case of octogenarian Murdoch, it’s apparent it’s never too late to achieve your dreams.
It helps of course if you’ve got billions: “Women like men who have resources and are willing to make them available. Even women like Hall who may have their own income, like men who are rich,” says Jed Diamond, of MenAlive.com who has been a marriage and family counsellor for 40 years.
“This is not to say that there aren’t other reasons that men and women like Hall and Murdoch come together. We also are drawn to someone who we fall in love with and we look to develop a close relationship.
“Humans are a pair-bonding species and we want to pair up throughout our lives, not just during our mating years.”
Whatever the chemistry between Hall and Murdoch, it has been a novelty to watch an older celebrity couple announce to the world their engagement four months after meeting — usually the reckless territory of the young, who have plenty of time left to unravel their mistakes.
In Murdoch’s case, with five years left to his 90th birthday, time may well be the factor for grabbing what he wants — whether it be sex, glamour or companionship, or if he’s hit the Jerry jackpot, all three.
For Hall, in comparison, she is 25 years his junior, which must put a pep in her step, when she is attending all those high society functions with one of the richest men in the world.
And while we don’t care less, really, about celebrity lives, Hall and Murdoch’s partnering has brought bit of fun — and hope — to all of us Jo Soaps. There is plenty of life left to be lived, no matter what your age.
Whether they are soul mates bonding at this stage of their lives, or a couple who love the limelight, you’ve got to raise your hat to them. And if they separate before they even marry, or shortly after they do, well they’ve given us a compelling story, regardless, of age.