Clooney, Alamuddin marry in star-studded Venice bash

Clooney, Alamuddin marry in star-studded Venice bash

VENICE - Agence France-Presse
Clooney, Alamuddin marry in star-studded Venice bash

George Clooney arrives at the Aman hotel to marry Amal Alamuddin, in Venice, Sept. 27. AP Photo

Hollywood heartthrob George Clooney and Lebanese-British lawyer Amal Alamuddin married in Venice on Sept. 27 before partying the night away with their A-list friends in one of the most high-profile celebrity weddings in years.

“George Clooney and Amal Alamuddin were married today (Sept. 27) in a private ceremony in Venice, Italy,” Clooney spokesman Stan Rosenfield said.

The announcement came as a surprise as the pair were not expected to officially tie the knot until today, though they are still tipped for a civil ceremony at the town hall to officialize the marriage under Italian law.

Earlier in the evening, a euphoric-looking Clooney swept up Venice’s Grand Canal to attend his wedding party, accompanied by some 20 boatloads of paparazzi and the screams of adoring fans.

Hundreds of camera flashes lit the water around him as the world’s most eligible bachelor prepared to break hearts across the world and exchange vows with his beautiful dark-haired fiancée.

The silver-haired actor and director, looking dashing in an Armani tux, grinned and rubbed his hands in glee as he entered the seven-star Aman hotel’s grand entrance to celebrate with Hollywood chums who have flown in from across the globe for the party.

Lebanese-born Alamuddin, who stayed out of sight inside the hotel, looked dazzling in a gown by red-carpet maestro Oscar de la Renta, according to a source.

Matt Damon, Bono, Bill Murray, Cindy Crawford and her husband Rande Gerber - rumored to be Clooney’s best man - glided up the canal ahead of the groom with dozens of other guests, waving to the crowds and showing off snazzy Versace, Gucci and Prada gowns.

Singing gondoliers, who had spent the day showing off the romantic candle-lit resort to snap-happy tourists, were swept aside in their wake as the world’s most famous waterway erupted with excitement.

Generous George was even thought to have invited his Venetian taxi driver Alessandro Greco along, after he was pictured in a tux hopping out of his boat and entering the Aman with other guests.

Clooney’s 36-year-old bride had been snapped Sept. 26 in a red gown at a soiree with close friends including actress Ellen Barkin - who threw the human rights lawyer a hen party several weeks ago.

In a Cinderella moment, Alamuddin lost her shoe after the stiletto heel got caught in a gap in the slatted floor in front of the hotel, but she recovered in style.

Clooney, who has owned a home in northern Italy for years, was married once before, to “Mad Men” actress Talia Balsam, but the pair split in 1993, just before his breakout role in “ER” propelled him to the status of global sex symbol.

Alamuddin’s rights work has involved representing Wikileaks founder Julian Assange. She moved to Britain as a three-year-old.