In the dazzling world of showbiz, Catherine Reitman’s journey is a testament to the idea that women can have it all – a flourishing career and a blissful family.
The 42-year-old actress was the brilliant creator and star of the long-running Workin’ Moms series.
But beyond her on-screen triumphs lies an even more extraordinary tale – the story of her real-life partner, Philip Sternberg, who not only played her on-screen spouse but also shared in her off-screen life.
Philip Sternberg and Catherine Reitman are both on-screen and off-screen partners, balancing their busy careers with their family life (Credit: Shawn Goldberg / Shutterstock)
Let’s delve into how they crossed paths, sealed their love in marriage, and triumphed together, balancing two busy careers.
If you’re curious, here’s everything you need to know about Philip Sternberg and Catherine Reitman’s relationship and rise to fame.
Meet Catherine Reitman: Workin’ Moms Superstar
Catherine Marcelle Reitman is 5 feet and 6 inches (165 cm) tall and is a multi-talented Canadian-American actress, producer, and writer.
Born on April 28, 1981, in Los Angeles, California, she was destined for greatness as entertainment prowess runs deep in the Reitman family.
Catherine’s father, filmmaker Ivan Reitman, is celebrated for directing and producing iconic films like Ghostbusters and Ghostbusters II. Meanwhile, her mother, Geneviève Robert, is a veteran French-Canadian actress.
Catherine Reitman is a Canadian-American multi-hyphenate star who stands at five feet and six inches (Credit: Sara De Boer / Startraksphoto)
Not to be outdone, her brother, director Jason Reitman, is a well-known actor with notable roles in films like Juno and Thank You for Smoking. Catherine’s sister, Caroline Reitman, is also an actress.
Catherine Reitman began her acting career in 1988; since then, she has continued to blossom and shine. After attending Cate School, she majored in acting at the University of Southern California.
Her passion for film led her to launch the movie review web show Breakin’ It Down with Catherine Reitman on YouTube.
She also made her mark on the small and big screens with appearances in television shows like The Real Wedding Crashers and movies such as Knocked Up, I Love You, Man, and Friends with Benefits.
However, creating the hit comedy series Workin’ Moms truly cemented her position as a force to be reckoned with in the entertainment industry.
Catherine Reitman wears many hats in the hit comedy series Workin’ Moms, juggling her roles as the creator, executive producer, writer, and star (Credit: YouTube)
Forming Wolf & Rabbit Entertainment ULC. with her husband, Philip Sternberg, Catherine took on multiple roles as the show’s creator, executive producer, writer, and star. Her brilliance shined through in each episode, and she even directed several of them herself.
The accolades poured in, with Workin’ Moms earning five Canadian Screen Award nominations in 2017, including one for Best Actress, Comedy for Catherine Reitman. It has captured the hearts of audiences, airing on both CBC and Netflix.
Apart from her notable roles in Workin’ Moms and various films, Catherine’s talent has graced popular series like Hollywood Residential, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, How I Met Your Mother, Weeds, and Black-ish. In 2022, she made a memorable appearance in the revival of the sketch comedy series, The Kids in the Hall.
How Did Catherine Reitman Meet Philip Sternberg?
In an interview with Streets of Toronto in January 2017, Catherine Reitman revealed how she first met Philip Sternberg.
She recounted, “I was picking up a paycheck for my friend after an audition when I first saw Philip. I was dressed ridiculously, in short shorts, with two braids, for a role that I absolutely was wrong for and didn’t get. Philip handed me the check and there was clear electricity between us. We didn’t exchange numbers. We just smiled and knew that something was happening.”
Fate, however, had other plans. Three months later, their paths crossed again, and Philip clarified his intentions – Catherine was “never walking out of his life again.”
Catherine Reitman and Philip Sternberg’s meet-cute involved a friend’s paycheck, short shorts, and two braids, with no numbers exchanged but with “clear electricity” between them (Credit: lev radin / Shutterstock)
Their first date was memorable, attending the cast and crew screening of the film Knocked Up, in which Catherine appeared.
Despite feeling embarrassed about her acting, Philip’s sweet and supportive words put her at ease. Catherine shared, “When my back first appeared on screen, Philip leaned into me and whispered: ‘Now that’s a nice neck.’”
Their courtship was unlike anything they had experienced before. Love bloomed rapidly, with “I love yous” exchanged within the first month and an engagement within six months. As Philip put it, “We just knew.”
Catherine visited Philip’s apartment for the first time as they took steps to know each other better. She recalled, “This confident man all of a sudden appeared so nervous. He lived in this dirty studio apartment in a dangerous part of town. I was taking the tour of his place when I stopped dead in my tracks. The man had an artsy mirror at the head of his bed. I looked at him and he turned beet red: “It’s not what you think.… It’s an antique.”
Philip Sternberg’s Romantic Proposal
Their love story took a romantic turn when Philip Sternberg planned an unforgettable proposal.
Catherine recounted the well-planned moment, “We were driving down to San Diego from L.A. for the weekend. I was starving and in a terrible mood for the entire drive. Little did I know what secret Philip was sitting on. I begged him to stop for fast food, but he said he had something planned. Did he ever. When we arrived, he pulled a picnic out. It was all of my favourite cheeses and cured meats. I dove in like an animal, while he sat and watched me nervously. A storm was rolling in, and he began to panic. He asked me to take a walk with him.”
Philip Sternberg planned an elaborate and unforgettable proposal that Catherine Reitman declared that saying yes to him was “the smartest move” she’s ever made (Credit: Shawn Goldberg / Shutterstock)
She continued, “I was crushed: ‘But we just started eating!’ I took that walk and we approached a cliff. He asked me to walk over the fencing onto the cliff’s edge. It hit me all of a sudden: this man was either going to propose … or murder me. I took the risk. He pointed to a nearby beach. It was hard to see through the storm, but there, in the sand, he had written out ‘Will You Marry Me?’ in painted white seashells and long-stemmed roses. He dropped to his knee, and I took the crappy flea market ring off my ring finger and threw it into the sea. Saying yes to him was the smartest move I’ve ever made.”
Catherine Reitman and Philip Sternberg’s Wedding
The couple exchanged vows in the scenic beauty of Santa Barbara, California, at Catherine’s parent’s home in September 2008.
As Catherine humorously recalled, their dreamy honeymoon in Italy led to delightful memories, even if they each gained 20 pounds.
Since that momentous day, Catherine and Philip have been happily married. Recently, celebrating their 14th anniversary, Catherine expressed gratitude for her husband’s unwavering support and love.
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In a post of a series of photos on her Instagram account, Catherine penned in the caption, “Happy anniversary to this absolute thirst trap. Oh does this man trap. 14 years ago I signed on to a life with this dude, completely unaware of how lucky I would be. From producing my YouTube show to elevating the tv show that changed our lives forever. He has never phoned it in once. Oh and then kids. We made those too. And Philip is the definition of a 50/50 parent. The man throws down in every aspect of our lives. Big love to my wolf ❤️🔥.”
Catherine and Philip as Workin’ Moms’ Kate and Nathan
In the hit comedy series Workin’ Moms, the on-screen chemistry between Kate Foster and her husband, Nathan, was undeniable, and there’s a beautiful reason behind it.
Catherine Reitman portrayed Kate, and her husband, Philip Sternberg, was the actor behind Nathan. Their natural connection shined through their characters, reflecting their real-life love.
Both being part of the film and TV industry, it was only a matter of time before this talented couple collaborated on a project together. That project was the very show Catherine created, Workin’ Moms. As the star, writer, director, and showrunner, Catherine has poured her heart and soul into this passion project.
On the other hand, Philip has executive produced and directed episodes of the series, aside from playing Kate’s fictional husband. Together, they were the driving force behind CBC’s beloved sitcom, which premiered in January 2017.
While they collaborated together, balancing work and personal life took time and effort for the couple, especially when they became co-stars during the show’s first season.
Catherine shared how they had to navigate the dynamics of working together on set while also being partners in parenting at home.
In an interview on the Today show in July 2022, Catherine said, “Look, it’s taken a lot of work and patience to create a working dynamic together where we know how to do that on set, and then turn it off and parent together at home. And I’m one of the lucky ones, I get to look across the set and my best friend, my husband, is rooting for me in each scene.”
The couple has mastered the art of communication and conflict resolution over six seasons.
Catherine added, “We work our way through it. Like any dynamic, I think you sort of figure out your language — how you speak to each other and when to wear what hat … And I’m lucky because I’ve got a pretty spectacular guy.”
Catherine Reitman and Philip Sternberg’s Parenthood Journey
Catherine Reitman and Philip Sternberg’s family story began with the arrival of their two sons – Jackson in 2013 and Liam Sternberg in 2015.
Her journey into motherhood ignited the spark behind her creation Workin’ Moms.
Fueled by her realization that authentic motherhood stories were missing from TV, Catherine challenged herself to portray the three-dimensional world of working mothers through her show.
Her experiences with postpartum depression after becoming a first-time mom added a genuine touch to the series, resonating with countless mothers who often felt unseen.
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With a toddler and a newborn at home during the show’s early days, she grappled with the challenges of juggling parenthood and running a television series.
In a Today’s Parent article, Catherine wrote, “For season two, I have two actual kids. They both have their own personalities and their own demands. The series became more about how the relationships I have in my life have become more complicated. In season two, we follow these women on this new voyage of ‘OK, you’ve had your kids and you’re back at work. Now how do your friendships change? Now that you have less time and energy and beauty to give, how do your relationships change?’”
Philip played a significant role in empowering Catherine to balance family and career. He reassured her they could have everything, saying, “A family is really important to me. And I promise, no matter how our life shakes out, I will make it so that you can still have a career and don’t have to sacrifice anything.”
Despite her demanding work hours, Catherine cherishes moments of being a present and engaged parent, taking time to be “lazy” with her kids.
She savored the joys of ordinary motherhood, telling PEOPLE in 2019: “I’m letting them play and jump all over me and trying to laugh and being a good, present parent, which can be very challenging when you work these hours. I walk them to the park. Sometimes I’m just dragging them on errands. All the things that normal moms do.”
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