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'The Green Mile' Actor Opens Up About Marriage to 16-Year-Old

ABC News(LOS ANGELES) -- Fifty-one-year-old Green Mile star Doug Hutchison raised more than a few eyebrows when he married a 16-year-old girl earlier this year. Hutchison and his bride, Courtney Stodden, say their relationship wasn't a case of love at first sight. Speaking to ABC News, they say they first connected last year, when she reached out to him via email to inquire about acting workshops Hutchison was holding. It took a little while for their romance to blossom because he was in Hollywood and she was based in Washington State.

Hutchison, who played sadistic prison guard Percy Wetmore in The Green Mile, says Stodden became flirtatious with him, though he didn't initially realize she was only 16. He says when he learned her age, his "world turned upside down....It didn't make me want to walk away, but it definitely was a struggle inside my heart...because I had already started falling for her." They began a relationship by email and phone, with the eventual blessing of Stodden's parents. After flying to Washington to meet Stodden in person for the first time, he proposed. They married in Las Vegas in May, though it wasn't reported by the media until the following month.

The couple says since their relationship was made public, they've been ridiculed on the Internet. They add that Stodden's parents have received death threats, Hutchison's mother and brother have all but disowned him, and Hutchison's agent and manager have dropped him. Hutchison says after his mother cut him out her life, "[Courtney] held me in her arms, and I cried a little bit. And we looked at each other afterwards, and we said we knew that this was gonna happen....And it brought us closer together."

The couple's future plans include a possible reality show.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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