Matthew Perry Reveals Heartbreaking Reason He Broke Off Julia Roberts Romance

The pair dated for six months in the mid-90s after he persuaded her to make a guest appearance in Friends.
Matthew Perry and Julia Roberts hug each other on the set of Friends
Matthew Perry and Julia Roberts hug each other on the set of Friends
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Matthew Perry has opened up about his romance with Julia Roberts and revealed the heartbreaking reason he called time on it.

The pair dated for six months between 1995 and 1996, after Friends producers sought to cast the Pretty Woman star in the sitcom.

Julia’s appearance came about after Friends co-creator Marta Kauffman asked Matthew to help persuade Julia to sign up to appear in season two’s post-Superbowl episode.

After Julia jokingly asked Matthew to explain quantum physics to her before agreeing to be on the show, “a three-month-long courtship by daily faxes” began, Matthew explained in his new memoir, Friends, Lovers and the Big Terrible Thing, which is being serialised in The Times and The Sun.

A five-and-a-half-hour phone call followed, in which Matthew said they were “falling”, before they eventually met in person and embarked upon a relationship.

However, Matthew called off the relationship because he believed he was “unloveable” and “not enough” for Julia.

Matthew said (via The Times): “Dating Julia Roberts had been too much for me. I had been constantly certain that she was going to break up with me. Why would she not? I was not enough; I could never be enough; I was broken, bent, unloveable.

“So instead of facing the inevitable agony of losing her, I broke up with the beautiful and brilliant Julia Roberts.”

Julia Roberts
Julia Roberts
Gilbert Flores via Getty Images

He added: “She might have considered herself slumming it with a TV guy, and TV guy was now breaking up with her. I can’t begin to describe the look of confusion on her face.”

Friends writer Jeff Astrof, who wrote half the episode in which Julia appeared, previously recalled watching the pair film the sitcom together, which it turned out actually happened after they had already begun dating.

Revealing she was stood on the sidelines finding Matthew’s character Chandler hilarious, Jeff told The Hollywood Reporter: “I’m like, ‘I wrote every one of those lines!’ I don’t know if she fell in love with Matthew on the spot but they soon started dating. I felt like Cyrano [de Bergerac]. Like, ‘Chandler is going to date Julia Roberts and I’m going to go home to my horrible girlfriend.’ That’s my memory of that episode.”


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