Jennifer Lopez: Signs of Marriage Trouble During Royal Visit?

07/16/2011 at 09:00 AM EDT

Jennifer Lopez, Marc Anthony Split: Signs of Trouble
Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony
Janet Mayer/Splash News Online
Even before the royal newlyweds arrived, the red carpet at the July 9 BAFTA gala in Los Angeles was buzzing over Jennifer Lopez – and not just because of her midriff-baring Emilio Pucci dress.

Lopez arrived without her husband Marc Anthony, instead bringing her mother, Guadalupe, who got to mingle with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge at the hottest Hollywood event of the summer.

A week later, Lopez and Anthony told PEOPLE that they made a "very difficult decision" to "end our marriage" after seven years. The couple have 3-year-old twins.

Although Anthony's absence raised eyebrows at the BAFTA event, it turns out this wasn’t the first time he was missing in action. The pair had not been seen together since early June, with Lopez traveling to Europe and later to Disneyland with their children, but not Anthony.

Power Couple

Anthony's no-shows fueled rumors of trouble in their marriage, even if Anthony did have reason to be away: he's been busy this summer filming the TNT medical drama HawthoRNe, in which he plays a police detective

Also, with Anthony and Lopez, Hollywood observers have long been wary of jumping to conclusions since catching people off-guard has been their hallmark from the very beginning.

They were married in secret in June 2004 at Lopez's Beverly Hills home.

At the time, the two had never even acknowledged their romantic relationship publicly, and, days before, Anthony had been granted a divorce in the Dominican Republic from Dayanara Torres, with whom he has two sons.

The marriage was the third for Lopez, and it came just months after her whirlwind 18-month-relationship with – and engagement to – Ben Affleck.

Lopez and Anthony went on to become one of show business's closest and most successful power couples. They were fixtures at award shows, premieres and fundraisers, famously toured together and, in February 2008, welcomed twins son Max and daughter Emme.

As late as last May, they still seemed very much together in business and in love.

Anthony doted on his wife on May 9 as she celebrated the release of her new album, Love? in Hollywood. Anthony "melted every time she acknowledged him," an observer said.

They turned out together on May 23 at a ceremony honoring TV producer Simon Fuller with a new star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, then performed together and kissed affectionately at the May 25 finale of American Idol, which Lopez joined as a judge last season.

The following week, they announced another business venture together: the globetrotting reality show, ¡Q'Viva! The Chosen to find the "world's most extraordinary talent."

Trouble Signs

But just days later, the first hint of trouble emerged. The couple appeared at the Samsung Hope for Children Gala in New York on June 7, and many photos showed Lopez without her usual radiant smile.

This would be their last event together before the split announcement.

Afterwards, Lopez , her mother and the twins traveled to France and Spain as the singer participated in a French reality TV show. Then on June 25, Lopez, her mother and the children were spotted at Disneyland in Anaheim, Calif., going on the Dumbo ride and attracting large crowds of curious guests.

Anthony was nowhere to be seen.

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