Cleo Wattenström, Joel Kinnaman’s Wife: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

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In House of Cards Season 5, which premieres on Netflix on May 30th, Joel Kinnaman will again be playing a major role.

After all, Joel Kinnaman stars as Will Conway, the governor of New York who is running against President Frank Underwood in the 2016 presidential election. Kinnaman is a 37-year-old actor who has also starred in movies like Suicide Squad and TV shows like The Killing. 

In real life, Joel Kinnaman is married to Cleo Wattenström. Here’s what you need to know about Wattenström and her relationship with Kinnaman.


1. She is a Tattoo Artist

A lot of actors wind up dating people who also work in the entertainment industry, but that’s not the case with Joel Kinnaman, whose wife is a tattoo artist.

According to her website, Cleo Wattenström takes inspiration from black and white films and photography, which is evident in much of her work.

“Focusing mainly in detailed black and grey work, her sought-after style has brought Wattenstrom around the world where she has been featured in some of the most prestigious tattoo conventions internationally,” the website states.

In an interview with Tattoo Life Magazine, Wattenström said that she became a tattoo artist because it was a good way to turn her passion for art into a career.

“What got me into tattooing was probably that I did not want to go to school and I needed to find something that I could earn money off of, and the only thing I was really good at was drawing,” she said.

Wattenström currently works in Southern California.


2. She Is Originally From Belgium

Cleo Wattenström was born in Belgium.

However, according to her website, she spent a number of years traveling around the world with her parents before eventually settling down in Stockholm, Sweden when she was a teenager. It was in Stockholm that she began an apprenticeship at the age of 14 which would lead her down the road to becoming a tattoo artist.

These days, Cleo Wattenström lives with Joel Kinnaman in Venice, California in a $3.7 million home, according to Variety.

Joel Kinnaman, as it turns out, also grew up in Stockholm, Sweden; he was born there in 1979.


3. She Started Dating Joel Kinnaman in 2014

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Cleo Wattenström and Joel Kinnaman have been together for about three years now.

US Weekly first reported that the two were in a relationship in December 2014, noting that they had now been dating for a number of months and were living together. US Weekly quoted a source as saying this was a “refreshing” relationship for Kinnaman.

It’s unclear precisely when the relationship between Cleo Wattenström and Joel Kinnaman started, but they were first photographed together in August 2014.

Joel Kinnaman had previously dated actress Olivia Munn. The same year that Joel Kinnaman began dating Cleo Wattenström, Olivia Munn began dating Aaron Rogers; Munn and Rogers broke up earlier this year.


4. They Were Married in 2016 in a Quick Wedding

When Joel Kinnaman appeared on The Talk in April 2016, he casually revealed that he and Cleo Wattenström were married.

On the show, Aisha Tyler said, “Your girlfriend is actually a tattoo artist,” and Kinnaman corrected her by saying, “My wife.”

This was not publicly known at the time, and Kinnaman later explained on The Late Late Show With James Corden that they had gotten married in early 2016 in a quick wedding that was hardly a big spectacle.

“I’m a romantic guy,” Kinnaman jokingly said. “I took her to this very romantic place on San Vicente Boulevard called Same Day Marriage. That was it. This little Russian lady sitting inside there, she was like, ‘Do you want to get married? $435, quick.’”

Kinnaman went on to say that he and Wattenström were brought into a very sketchy looking room, where the Russian woman said to both of them, “Marriage, rest of your lives, you say yes.” They both said yes, and that was the end of it.


5. They Frequently Travel Together

Though they live in California, Joel Kinnaman and Cleo Wattenström frequently travel together.

Wattenström says as much on her website, writing, “Cleo lives and works out of Venice, CA, but spends a few months out of the year traveling internationally. The best way to stay updated on Cleos travel dates is via Instagram.”

On Instagram, followers can see that just over the past 16 months, Joel Kinnaman and Cleo Wattenström have traveled to Dubai, South Africa, and Cuba.

Cleo Wattenström also often accompanies her husband to movie premieres, and in 2016 they both attended a dinner at the White House.