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Photo from PARIS MATCH magazine, August 9,2001 issue

Star Bodyguard Romances

August 16, 2001

KEVIN COSTNER and WHITNEY HOUSTON starred in 'The Bodyguard,' a romantic thriller about a beautiful entertainer whose life is in jeopardy and the man who was hired to protect her at all costs. When they fall in love, he is compelled to leave, as their love could distract him from keeping her safe.

Such is not the case in real life where bodyguards and the women they safeguard have no such qualms. ROSEANNE and BEN THOMAS, PRINCESS STEPHANIE and DANIEL DUCRUET, WYNONNA and D. R. ROACH, VENUS WILLIAMS and DAVID TOMASSONI and PATTY HEARST and BERNARD SHAW have taken the intimacy created by the female client-male bodyguard relationship to the next level and beyond.

Before she was even divorced from TOM ARNOLD, Roseanne announced her engagement to Ben Thomas, who had headed up Roseanne's security detachment for several months at that point in time. The couple has since married, separated, filed for divorce and reconciled. Roseanne told Esquire magazine in its March 2001 issue: "I hate sex. I'm done with it. I tell my husband he should go have sex with other people, but he never does. I don't know why. Probably because I told him to. Whatever you tell men, they always do the opposite. The trick is to tell them they should cheat on you, and then don't have sex with them, either. Then you have a happy marriage. You stop having sex and just hang out and eat and watch TV."

Princess Stephanie's relationship with her personal bodyguard -- Daniel Ducruet -- rocked the small country of Monaco. The romance between GRACE KELLY and PRINCE RAINIER's daughter and the commoner blossomed in 1991. Princess Stephanie became pregnant with Daniel's child and gave birth to a son, Louis, in November 1992, a second child -- a daughter -- followed in May of 1994. Prince Rainier finally relented and allowed his youngest daughter to marry in July 1995, with a prenuptial agreement, but it wasn't long until Daniel was caught in flagrante and the marriage ended.

When Princess Stephanie became pregnant again with her third child, daughter Camille, who was born in July 1998, rumor had it that the father was yet another of her bodyguards -- JEAN RAYMOND GOTTTLIEB -- who was present at the baby's birth. Stephanie didn't ID the father and satisfy gossipmongers. Today the royal princess lives and raises her children on her own.

Another princess - this time of the tennis courts -- Venus Williams -- was assigned a bodyguard back in May 1999, when she competed in the Italian Open. David Tomassoni was an Italian student working part time for the protection agency. Since they met, the duo has been spotted together in Italy, Great Britain and the U.S. Following her Wimbledon win, Venus flew to Italy, where she met David in Jesi, the small town that he calls home. Venus' father is none to happy about the situation. First, because he believes dating distracts his daughter from her focus on tennis, but also because he doesn't want her to be involved in a biracial relationship.

Heartbreak and heartache is the stuff of which country songs are made. When country songbird Wynonna Judd's first marriage ended in divorce court in 1999, she turned for consolation to the man who had guarded her body for eight years -- D.R. Roach.

And while Wynonna may sing about standing by your man, Bernard Shaw stood by the woman he loved -- Patricia Hearst. The heiress married her former bodyguard following her release from prison and today they make their home in Connecticut with their two daughters.


It's a love match for Venus Williams, who's fallen head over heels for her bodyguard.

The sexy tennis queen has been seeing Davide Tomassoni, a hunky Italian security guard who protected her during a tennis tournament in Rome two years ago. Williams, 21, and Tomassoni, 25, were recently seen frolicking together at a public pool and were spotted holding hands by candlelight at a romantic bistro in Italy. "They make a very cute couple together. Davide has even introduced Venus to his parents," one tennis insider told The Post.

Friends of the couple have compared their romance to the plot of "TheBodyguard," in which a pop star played by Whitney Houston falls for her tough-as-nails security man, portrayed by Kevin Costner. Tomassoni, who studies political economics at the University of Florence and still works part time as a bodyguard, is believed to be Williams' first serious boyfriend.

How serious? Williams flew to Italy to meet Tomassoni's parents and stayed in their home in the tiny village of Jesi, near Ancona. It's where the pair were seen kissing and cuddling by the pool at the Re Federico Grande Hotel. "They really enjoyed each other's company," one witness told London's Daily Mirror. The 6-foot beauty has also said she'd never seriously date anybody until she was sure it was the man she wanted to marry. Reps for the tennis superstar were not available for comment yesterday. It's been a banner year for Williams.

Besides her new romance, she recently inked a $30 million endorsement deal with Reebok. And earlier this summer, she successfully defended her women's singles title at Wimbledon.

Venus' 19-year-old sister, Serena, isn't letting the grass grow under her feet either in the love department. Serena has been dating football star LaVar Arrington.