- Zach Braff became a household name after starring in the sitcom ‘Scrubs’
- He also works as a writer/director, with 2004’s ‘Garden State’ being his first film
- The star dated Florence Pugh, whom he directed in 2023’s ‘A Good Person’
Zach Braff has carved himself an incredible career in Hollywood, finding success as an actor, director and writer. First finding a legion of fans by playing the hilariously neurotic J.D. on the the sitcom Scrubs, Zach would parlay his fame into writing and directing 2004’s Garden State, with himself and Natalie Portman in the lead roles. While he continued to slay in Tinseltown, he also managed to earn a pilot license, start a podcast with Scrubs costar Donald Faison and date a bevy of beautiful women! From musicians to models to acting ingenues, let’s take a look at all the ladies who stole Zach’s heart, below!
Fresh off her romance with tennis star Andy Roddick, Mandy Moore started a romance with Zach in 2004. The two seemed like a perfect match, keeping their relationship quiet at first and then going all in once it was public: Zach invited Mandy to do a guest appearance on Scrubs, while Mandy wrote songs about him on her album Wild Hope.
“It’s just nice to be with anyone who’s supportive of what you do and proud of you and respects you and respects your work,” Mandy said of the couple to Cosmopolitan in 2006. “I feel lucky to be with someone who’s like that. I guess he understands how hectic it gets and why I’m so tired after work.”
Shortly after Mandy spoke with the outlet, she and Zach broke up. In the aftermath, Mandy said, “We weren’t like a big ‘going out’ couple. But when the relationship ended, it was ‘a bummer.’” per People. She added that the breakup was the icing on a “the really bad cake. The burned cake.” Zach, in turn, said he was swearing off famous women after the split. “I don’t want to date the super-famous girls,” he said on The Howard Stern Show in 2014. “Remember, I did that once before when I dated Mandy Moore and it was not a good, I didn’t like it.”
Mandy has since gone on to marry and divorce singer Ryan Adams, and in 2018, the This Is Us actress married musician Taylor Goldsmith. She has welcomed two children with Taylor, which she boasts about on her Instagram!
While Zach told Howard he wanted to avoid dating famous women, before he came to that conclusion, the star jumped into another relationship with an actress right after Mandy. For a few years, Zach was linked with Roswell star Shiri Appleby. Shortly after they went their separate ways, an insider told Life & Style, per Just Jared, “Shiri and Zach were a great match. They both come from traditional Jewish backgrounds, but Shiri wanted to start a family and Zach shuddered at the thought of being tied down. He can’t imagine getting married before he’s 40.”
Shiri has since gone on to sit in the director’s chair on productions as well. Check out her latest projects on her Instagram!
Zach mended his heart by dating a model after Shiri! From 2009 to 2014, Zach was in a serious relationship with American beauty Taylor Bagley, who landed on the cover of Vogue, and more. She often posts her latest campaigns to her Instagram. After the actor and the blond bombshell went public with their romance, Zach said the best part of his relationship was “having a best friend to do all sorts of fun things with,” per People. The two would eventually drift apart and officially break it off before Zach’s Broadway debut in 2014.
Throwing the “no dating famous women” rule out the window again, Zach sparked up a romance with British acting ingenue Florence Pugh in 2019. While Florence was blowing up in Hollywood with her roles in Midsommar and Little Women, the couple remained relatively private, although their age gap was making it difficult to keep them out of the press. The Oscar nominated actress said the 20-year age difference between her and the Scrubs vet was the main source of contention for fans during their 3-year relationship. “We weren’t in anyone’s faces. It was just that people didn’t like it,” she told Vogue for their Winter 2023 issue. “They imagined me with someone younger and someone in blockbusters.”
Alas, the pair would part ways quietly in 2022. “We’ve been trying to do this separation without the world knowing, because it’s been a relationship that everybody has an opinion on,” Florence told Harper’s Bazaar in Sept. 2022. “We just felt something like this would really do us the benefit of not having millions of people telling us how happy they are that we’re not together. So we’ve done that. I automatically get a lumpy throat when I talk about it.”
In good news, the former couple appear to be on very good terms! They reunited recently on the red carpet for the premiere of A Good Person, a movie written and directed by Zach and starring Florence. And Zach cannot help but still gush about Florence, calling her ‘one of the greatest actors of her generation,” in his 2023 Vogue interview. He added, “You cannot take your eyes off of her and it’s not just her beauty and it’s not just her acting ability, it’s that thing, that magic thing that transcends the screen, where anyone and everyone goes: I want to see whatever this person does.”