Dan Aykroyd and Donna Dixon Separate After 39 Years, Remain Legally Married: 'Loving Friendship'

"We are now on separate life paths," Dan Aykroyd and wife of nearly 40 years Donna Dixon tell PEOPLE

NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 12: Dan Aykroyd and wife Donna Dixon pose backstage at the hit play "It;s Only a Play" on Broadway at The Jacobs Theater on February 12, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Bruce Glikas/FilmMagic)
Photo: Bruce Glikas/FilmMagic

Dan Aykroyd and Donna Dixon are going their separate ways.

The Emmy Award winner, 69, and his wife of nearly 40 years announced their separation Friday exclusively to PEOPLE, although they continue to be legally married and share a "loving friendship."

"After 39 years as a couple we are now on separate life paths. We remain legally married, co-parents, co-workers and business partners," the pair tells PEOPLE in a joint statement.

"This is our choice in loving friendship."

Dan Aykroyd and Donna Dixon
Dan Aykroyd and Donna Dixon.

Aykroyd and Dixon, 64, tied the knot in 1983 after meeting that year on the set of the comedy film Doctor Detroit.

They later went on to appear together in Twilight Zone: The Movie (1983), Spies Like Us (1985), The Couch Trip (1988) and Exit to Eden (1994).

Dan Aykroyd and Donna Dixon

The pair share daughters Danielle (known professionally as singer-songwriter Vera Sola), 32, Belle, 28, and Stella, 24.

The Saturday Night Live alum previously opened up about his lasting connection with Dixon in an interview with the Tampa Bay Times.

RELATED VIDEO: Dan Aykroyd Opens Up About Drugs and Love in Candid Tribute to Carrie Fisher

"You gotta find the right person — look them in the eye, have them look back, and know their soul," Aykroyd said in 2014.

"She's a Southern woman who is understanding and doesn't mind dealing with the boys from time to time. I call her the White Goddess. And I'm the Green Demon."

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Aykroyd was previously engaged to the late Carrie Fisher in the early 1980s.

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