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Former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s statement to the Los Angeles Times — that he had fathered a child more than a decade ago with a household staffer —was what led to his separation with wife Maria Shriver.

Schwarzenegger told the Times, “After leaving the governor’s office I told my wife about this event, which occurred over a decade ago. I understand and deserve the feelings of anger and disappointment among my friends and family. There are no excuses and I take full responsibility for the hurt I have caused. I apologized to Maria, my children and my family. I am truly sorry.”

Schwarzenegger has chosen to return to a movie career, and already there have been doubts that, at 63, he can revive the action roles that made him a $20 million superstar in the 1990s. If you can open a movie and produce results, Hollywood has a history of looking the other way (although the planned Arnold the Superhero comic looks a little awkward for the moment). The question is whether his secret impacted his decision not to pursue another public office. It also colors the way that he handled allegations of groping when he first ran for governor in 2003, and how Shriver stood up for him then.

Update: Shriver gave the following statement to People: “This is a painful and heartbreaking time. As a mother, my concern is for the children. I ask for compassion, respect and privacy as my children and I try to rebuild our lives and heal. I will have no further comment.”