• Cher opened up about her love story with Val Kilmer, whom she dated in the '80s
  • She shared that they met at a birthday party a friend threw for her
  • Cher said she "loves" Kilmer and praised him for his documentary "Val"

Cher got candid about her romance with Val Kilmer, including how they fell in love, why it didn't work and how they kept their friendship.

In an interview with People, the "Believe" singer, 75, opened up about her love story and friendship with Kilmer, 61, whom she dated in the 1980s.

"We called ourselves Sid and Ethel. Val didn’t want to yell 'Cher' and I didn’t want to yell 'Val,'" she revealed. "We also called ourselves Valus Maximus and Cherus Reprimandus. It was just kind of who I was in the household. Of course he was Maximus, come on."

Cher said she was introduced to the "Top Gun" actor at a birthday party a friend threw for her. "We became friends because we laughed at the same things constantly. He would sleep over and it was just a friendship [at first.] That took a long time. Well, I guess not really a long time," she shared.

The "Moonstruck" star, who was more than 13 years older than Kilmer, also commented on their age difference.

"He was so young. Was he 22? What was I? I don't know. Thirty-something. It was a bigger deal back then," she recalled. "The truth was if I hadn't gone out with younger men, I would have never had a date. Younger men weren't intimidated by older women. But older men in my age category, they weren't having it."

Cher, who said Kilmer "was so good with my kids" and helped her prepare for her role in "Mask," also noted that their strong personalities often led to them clashing with each other.

"We had unbelievable times and then put up with some times when they weren't [that way] because we were both Alpha males. We were both individuals and neither of us was going to give up on that," she recollected.

But their need for independence did affect their relationship in the long run. "Our sense of humor, and what we would put up with from one another, was more than I think I've ever had with any other guy. He would just go off and do his own thing and you just had to be prepared. And he was so beautiful. It went from madly in love and laughing hysterically to respecting each other's ability," the Oscar winner continued.

Cher said she watched the documentary "Val," which chronicles his career and his health struggles, and praised her ex for being "so creative like nobody I've ever known." "He's a true artist and Renaissance man," she added of Kilmer, who was diagnosed with throat cancer in 2015.

Cher and Kilmer were in a relationship from 1982 to 1984. The actor went on to marry Joanne Whalley in 1988 and welcomed two kids with her, but they split in 1996. Cher, on the other hand, continued to be romantically linked to a number of stars, including Tom Cruise and Richie Sambora.

Following their breakup, Kilmer and Cher remained good friends. She admitted that she was unsure how they maintained their friendship but said it came easy for them.

"He can be a brat too, but you forgive him. You forgive him [for] everything. Even when I was angry, it was still a joy. If he called, it wouldn't matter where I was, I would go," Cher said.

She continued, "I loved him—and I love him. I [just wrote to him], I said, 'Valus Maximus, I'm sorry if I did anything to piss you off or hurt your feelings. I love you and your documentary was all things... I love the things that pissed me off, the things that made me hysterical, amazed, hurt, astonished, etc. You are brave and beyond brilliant. Ethel.'"

"Val" is now streaming on Prime Video.

[8:22] U.S. singer Cher arrives with American designer Marc Jacobs for the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute Gala 2015
Cher arrives with American designer Marc Jacobs at the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute Gala 2015 in New York City, May 4, 2015. Reuters/Andrew Kelly