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Diane Lane and Jon Bon Jovi dated briefly in the 1980s, and he reportedly wrote "You Give Love a Bad Name" about her.
How They Met: The pair began dating around 1985 — Bon Jovi’s debut album had been released the previous year and Lane was perhaps best known for her role in The Outsiders.
When They Peaked: Lane has been complimentary whenever her relationship with Bon Jovi is broached in interviews. In 2017 the actress told Watch What Happens Live host Andy Cohen that she and the rocker dated for “five months, I was 20,” noting that “every girl should have such a wonderful experience when she’s that young."
Recalling the brief period, Lane said, “I have some photos of him packing for the tour ... Just all the jockstraps were lined up on the floor for the whole band to get through the whole tour. An ocean of jockstraps.” That is some vivid imagery.
After Lane’s admission sparked a series of follow-ups from Cohen and fellow guest Jim Parsons, she apologized to her ex on air. “Forgive me, Jon,” she said over Cohen and Parsons’s banter. “It’s been 30 years and they’re still talking about us.”
The Breakup: It’s long been rumored that Lane is the red-manicured villain of Bon Jovi’s 1986 chart-topper “You Give Love a Bad Name.” Lane herself refuted the claim in 2007, laying out the facts for Esquire: “I never wear red nail polish.” Case closed.
From Lane’s perspective, the split was simple, inevitable: She was 20. “Going out with somebody for five months is long when you’re 20,” she told The Advocate in 2008. “The fact that he was away and traveling on his tours was probably how we lasted so long.”
Bon Jovi’s former tour manager Rick Bozzett had a different take. In his memoir, Sex, Drugs and Bon Jovi, Bozzett implied that the split could be traced back to Lane’s relationship with the band’s lead guitarist, Richie Sambora.
“The very thing that made Jon feel so passionate toward Diane Lane in the first place ended up being the reason for their sudden, unceremonious breakup,” Bozzett wrote. “Diane was young and wild and loved to party. But she loved to party so much that Jon caught her partying with Richie Sambora. That wasn’t a good day for Jon’s relationship with Diane, to say nothing of Jon-Richie relations.”
Lane appeared to deny Bozzett’s implication, reportedly telling the New York Daily News, "Some people will just try and sell a book, and I can't blame them. They can make up what they like. What was that line from the Cars' song, 'Let the Good Times Roll'? 'Let them say what they want, baby!’"
That said, she also admitted her memory of the relationship was “a little fuzzy,” given it had ended 25 years prior.
In 1989, Bon Jovi told Rolling Stone that his short time with Lane and the reunion with his high school sweetheart Dorothea Hurley “say everything about my career with this band.”
“It took us some time to find ourselves, in our personal lives as well as our career,” he explained. “So I did that. I went out and had a ... whatever you want to call it. I went out with a girl for ten months, a year maybe.” It’s unclear whether Bon Jovi is referring to Lane, considering she’s said they were together for five months on multiple occasions. “You come to terms with who you are and what you’re about. That lifestyle is not for me,” he continued.