After nearly 15 years of marriage, Bollywood superstar Aamir Khan and his filmmaker wife Kiran Rao announced their divorce on Saturday.
In a statement, however, the 56-year-old "Mr Perfectionist", who has a huge fan following in Bangladesh, and Kiran pledged to remain devoted parents to their son Azad and work as collaborators on film projects "that we feel passionate about".
"In these 15 beautiful years together we have shared a lifetime of experiences, joy and laughter, and our relationship has only grown in trust, respect and love. Now we would like to begin a new chapter in our lives -- no longer as husband and wife, but as co-parents and family for each other.
"We began a planned separation some time ago, and now feel comfortable to formalise this arrangement, of living separately yet sharing our lives the way an extended family does," the statement read.
The couple added: "We remain devoted parents to our son Azad, who we will nurture and raise together. We will also continue to work as collaborators on films, Paani Foundation, and other projects that we feel passionate about."
Aamir and Kiran also thanked their families and friends for their constant support and understanding "about this evolution in our relationship". "We request our well wishers for good wishes and blessings, and hope that - like us - you will see this divorce not as an end, but as the start of a new journey."
Aamir tied the knot with Kiran in 2005 and were blessed with their son six years later. The couple first met on the sets of Bollywood blockbuster Lagaan, where Kiran was an assistant director.
Known as "Mr Perfectionist" in Bollywood, Aamir has established himself as one of the most influential actors of Indian cinema through his 30-year career in Hindi films. He is the fourth richest actor with a net worth of USD 180 million.
Aamir made his debut as a child artiste in his uncle Nasir Hussain's blockbuster film Yaadon Ki Baaraat in 1973. His adult debut was with the film Holi in 1984. But he shot to limelight for his brilliant performance in Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak four years later.
In 1999, he founded Aamir Khan Productions, whose first film, Lagaan (2001), got him a National Film Award.
Also read: The three Khans who still rule Bollywood
After a four-year gap, Aamir made a comeback with back-to-back blockbusters like Fanaa and Rang De Basanti. He made his directorial debut with Taare Zameen Par (2007), which also won him the awards for Best Film and Best Director. His greatest global success came with Ghajini, 3 Idiots, Dhoom 3, PK, and Dangal.
Apart from receiving a number of awards, including four National Film Awards and the Padma Shri and the Padma Bhushan, Aamir was conferred with an honorary title by the Chinese government in 2017.
The superstar's first marriage with Reena Dutta ended in divorce in 2002. He has two children from his first marriage.