Ariana Grande‘s new romance with Wicked costar Ethan Slater is raising eyebrows amid her divorce from Dalton Gomez — and Us Weekly is breaking down the timeline of events for you.
“Ariana and Ethan are dating; however things are fairly new. Ariana and Dalton split in January, and Ethan is separated from his wife, ” a source tells Us. “Ariana and Ethan have only recently begun seeing each other but they have a lot of fun together and are enjoying each other’s company.”
Us confirmed on Monday, July 17, that Grande, 30, and Gomez, 27, called it quits, with a second source telling Us that the exes had “been having some issues for months now.” The insider added that the duo, who tied the knot in May 2021, started having issues “that they couldn’t resolve” before Grande left to film Wicked in London in December 2022 — and “the distance did not help.”
While it was announced in November 2021 that the “Positions” singer would take on the role of Glinda in the musical movie, Slater, 31, wasn’t cast as Boq until December 2022. In the stage version of Wicked, the munchkin Boq has an unreciprocated crush on Glinda, who sets him up with Elphaba’s sister, Nessarose, instead.
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Slater has also walked down the aisle in the past. The actor — who is best known for his role as SpongeBob Squarepants in the Broadway musical of the same name — welcomed a son in 2022 with now-estranged wife Lilly Jay. The pair tied the knot in 2018 and recently separated.
In May, the actor shared a Mother’s Day tribute to Jay. “Happy first Mother’s Day to the most loving caring and wonderful mom/person in the world,” he wrote via Instagram alongside a photo of their son’s shadow and tiny hand.
Gomez, meanwhile, has yet to publicly comment on his ex’s new man. A third source told Us that he was “really hoping to make things work with Ariana.”
“Despite the rocky patches they’ve been through, he isn’t ready to give up on their marriage. He saw himself spending the rest of his life with Ariana and will do anything to get past this,” the insider said.
A fourth insider added that he’s trying to get back out there, but “truth be told, he’s not over Ariana and would still love to win her back.” The fourth source concluded that Grande is “fine” with Gomez exploring other romantic options. “She just wants to move forward and has no hard feelings about their breakup.”
After the split made headlines, eagle-eyed fans were quick to notice that Grande had wiped her and Gomez’s wedding photos from her Instagram account. One day later, a source told Us that Grande is “determined to move forward,” adding that her loved ones are “happy” about the changes she’s making in her personal life.
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“As sad as it is, the consensus on both sides is that this is ultimately for the best. Ariana and Dalton are two very different people,” the source shared.