"They were together for quite a long time and it is always hard breaking up. She''s focused on her work," her father added. The British actress met Friend in 2005 on a screen adaptation of classic story Pride and Prejudice. But the pressure of being constantly in the public eye finally took its toll on the couple.
Cracks started to appear in mid-December when Friend arrived without the actress at the London Coliseum gala production of The Nutcracker. He took his mother Caroline instead. The couple split after a heart-to-heart before Christmas.
But a pal said: "Rupert hates the idea of being followed and photographed. Keira partially had to accept it because of her rising profile." The pal added, "It affected the harmony in the relationship. The pressure took its toll and both decided they should go their separate ways. They will remain life-long friends."