By Emma Moylan

31st October 2019

Johnny Vegas Wife: Who Is She, How They Met And Their Kids

Known professionally as Johnny Vegas, his real name is Michael Joseph Pennington.  But who is Johnny Vegas’ wife, Maia Dunphy and how did they meet?

Johnny Vegas is an English actor and comedian. He is best known for being part of the Benidorm cast as well as playing Eric Agnew in the BBC show Still Open All Hours.

Despite being a pretty regular face on our TV screens, the comedian tends to keep his private life private.

So just what do we know about his wife, children and family? We’re taking a look at his eight-year marriage and its trials and tribulations.

Who Is Johnny Vegas’ Wife?

Johnny Vegas‘ wife, Maia Dunphy, is an Irish television producer, broadcaster and writer.

Dunphy has written and produced for comedy including Podge and Rodge, on which Johnny Vegas made a guest appearance.

How Did They Meet?

Maia has spoken about how she felt when she first set eyes on Johnny.

“When I first met Johnny, I didn’t think very much of him.”

But just like in any good rom com, that soon changed.

Johnny Vegas Wife

Image Source/The Mirror

The two met again when Dunphy asked him for an interview for a newspaper.

That interview, however, turned into drinks and the pair partied for about 12 hours. After that, Johnny text Maia asking if he could take her for a meal.

When she got home, Maia found a handwritten card written in calligraphy with a wax seal, her initials on the back.

She recalls:

“He said how nice it was to meet me and how much he was looking forward to dinner. I couldn’t turn down dinner with a man who does that!

“He gave me this bag of individually wrapped presents. Things that I’d mentioned – my lip liner that had cracked, some movie I’d never seen. I had even forgotten I’d mentioned them! It was really, really sweet.

“I never looked back. No one ever believes it, they say, “That Johnny Vegas? The drunk lad?” But he still does things like that, he is a die-hard romantic!”

Getting Married THEN Moving In

Johnny and Maia married in 2011. The wedding was held in the home town of Maia’s mother: Seville.

Opening up about the marriage in a piece for Independent, Maia explained how the two didn’t move in together until after the wedding.

She said:

“That was the norm, it wasn’t remotely odd. Now living together is odd. It’s like: “Jesus, is that what you’re like?”

She explains how this led to arguments about domestic life ‘from toilet seats to stacking dishwashers’.

Johnny Vegas Wife- Maia Dunphy

Image Source/DailyMirror

Maia explained:

“Long distance suited us because we were both really busy. Our end goal was always to live together, but we couldn’t work out where – London was really the result of a process of elimination.”

Who Are Johnny’s Children?

Soon after the couple moved to London, Maia fell pregnant.

38 at the time, Maia has admitted being ‘terrified’.

She explained:

“When I found out I was pregnant, I was terrified. People kept saying to me, “You’re 38, what the hell is wrong with you?”

I’ve never actively not wanted children, but when you’re a freelancer and you’re traveling a lot, other things just take priority.

When the subject of kids came up, I’d always say, “Not now.”

In 2015, they welcomed to the world their little boy Tom.

As well as sharing son, Tom, together, Johnny has another son to take into account. He shares son, Michael Pennington Jnr, with his ex Catherine Donnelly.

Since their split, Catherine has expressed how she felt about their relationship. She said:

“Johnny Vegas is a hilarious friend in the bar… but he was an utterly hopeless husband.”

The pair were married for four years before the cracks became too much.

But Johnny has credited his son Michael for helping to turn his life around.

Taking to the red carpet together, father and son looked like doppelgangers.

Johnny Vegas and son

Image Source/DailyMail

Previously, he would go on ‘four-day benders’ but said:

“When you have a child, it’s suddenly that feeling of, “I need to be around now and I want to be around.”

‘It’s not about you and in a great way that pulls you back from the abyss.”

The Break-Up

In May 2018, the couple separated after seven years of marriage.

Posting a joint message on Twitter, they asked for privacy.

They wrote:

“It is with a heavy heart that we want to let you know that we separated some time ago last year.

“We are telling people now because speculation is unhelpful at best, and dangerous at worst.

“As we think is obvious, we continue to fully support each other; there is no acrimony, no story and no one else involved.

“We have never played out our relationship publicly, so we don’t feel it’s too much to ask for privacy now.

“We also ask people to be mindful that there are two children involved, and their welfare is our main concern now.

“Thank you. X.”

Talking about her relationship with Johnny, Maia explained how they spoke everyday and Facetimed every other day for their son, Tom, to speak to his father.

She admitted it was hard to be away for each other so much but the couple always let the other do their own thing.

Despite being separated, the family vowed to remain close and spent Christmas together.

Johnny tweeted:

“A lovely family outing earlier to @liverpoolphil for @ItsAWonderfulLife and now I’m making crackers while we all watch TheQueenAndI on SkyOne. Not a bad start to what is already looking like a very merry Christmas. Cheers”.

Back Together For Christmas

In December 2018, reports came in that the couple had been working through their issues and had rekindled their romance.

Maia said:

“We have been sorting things out over the last few months and things are good. It is brilliant.”

“Living together doesn’t work because it is really complicated. I am doing a lot of work here in writing and developing.

“I have a stepson who is in school in London and Johnny needs to be there for him and he is really busy.

“Unfortunately, two kids being schooled in different countries makes things complicated.”

Maia Dunphy
Johnny Vegas and Maia Dunphy pictured in Dublin

Despite Johnny living in England and Maia living in Ireland, the two both agree that their love supersedes the difficulties.

Maia explains:

“We are mad about each other, it is as simple as that. It is certainly not easy and I am sure that he wishes that he met someone who works down the road and vice versa.

“If you like someone a lot, you will try and make it work.”

Johnny Vegas’ Mum

Johnny (real name Michael) is the youngest of four children to dad Lawrence and mum Patricia.

At eleven years old, Michael attended St. Joseph’s College, a Catholic boarding-school to train for Priesthood but after feeling homesick, returned home.

Johnny’s dad Lawrence tragically passed away in March 2017 to cancer. He has since opened up about how the loss prompted him to change his lifestyle and lose some weight.

Speaking on This Morning, the actor said:

“My big thing that I’m completely honest about is my smoking and I want to stop.”

Laughing about the reaction of the press, Johnny joked:

“The papers said “shocking weight loss” but it took 15 months of walking past bread and cheese and everything that I love. I would have made the perfect pauper!”

Meanwhile, Johnny Vegas’ mum has been giving him a run for his money, appearing on All Round To Mrs Browns.

Image Source/BBC

Mum, Patricia, quickly became the star of the show as she slammed her son for his ‘filthy’ stand up.

Patricia talked about watching Mrs Brown more than she watches her son.

She said:

“I can’t stand your stand up. It’s filthy”

Johnny explained:

“It’s not filthy. It’s just a different take on looking at life.”

To which Patricia curtly replied:

“Well it’s not my kind of life”

Recently, Johnny has taken to his Twitter account to thank the NHS for looking after his mother in hospital.

Image Source/Twitter

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