Florence Pugh is reflecting on the online discourse surrounding her relationship with Zach Braff.
The Don't Worry Darling star, who split from the Scrubs actor in 2022 after at least two years together, got candid when addressing the negative comments about their romance—and specifically, their more than 20-year age gap.
"We weren't in anyone's faces. It was just that people didn't like it," Pugh, 27, recalled in an interview with Vogue, published Jan. 12. "They imagined me with someone younger and someone in blockbusters. I think young relationships in Hollywood are so easily twisted because they add to the gossip sites. It's exciting to watch. And I think I was in a relationship that didn't do any of that."
The Little Woman actress and Braff, 47, first sparked romance rumors in April 2019 after they were spotting holding hands in New York City. At the time, Pugh was 23 and Braff was 44.
Amid the criticism, she wasn't afraid to call out those against their relationship, often taking to social media to defend herself and Braff. "I'm 24 and I can't choose who I love," Pugh shared on the podcast Sue Perkins: An Hour of So With in July 2020. "There's a reason why I'm not with someone my age—It hasn't worked. So who are you trying to match me up with?"
And when confirming that she and Braff had broken up in an Aug. 2022 interview, the Midsommar star noted how the discourse in their relationship played into keeping the news quiet.
"We've been trying to do this separation without the world knowing, because it's been a relationship that everybody has an opinion on," she told Harper's BAZAAR. "We just felt something like this would really do us the benefit of not having millions of people telling us how happy they are that we're not together. So we've done that."
However, Pugh and Braff have remained friendly since their split. Earlier this month, he wished her a happy birthday on his Instagram Stories, calling her "Legend." Florence reposted the actor's post, adding a white heart emoji.
The two have also continued their professional relationship. Pugh stars in Braff's new dramedy film, A Good Person, which filmed last fall and is set for release March 24.
And the Garden State actor has nothing but glowing praise for his ex.
"I quite simply think she's one of the greatest actors of her generation," Braff told Vogue about Pugh. "She's just magnetic. You cannot take your eyes off of her. And it's not just her beauty and it's not just her acting ability, it's that thing, that magic thing that transcends the screen, where anyone and everyone goes: I want to see whatever this person does."
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