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‘Friends’ Writers Helped Matthew Perry Woo Guest Star Julia Roberts by ‘Flirting Over Faxing’: ‘We Were on Team Matthew’

Could this BE any more romantic? Matthew Perry convinced Julia Roberts to appear on Friends 25 years ago in the most unconventional way — the pair also got a little flirty via some unexpected 90s technology!

Related: 'Friends' Cast: Where Are They Now?

Kevin Bright, the show’s cocreator, told The Hollywood Reporter this week Perry, 51, was fully responsible for getting the Notting Hill star, 53, to make a guest appearance on the sitcom. She starred in a 1996 episode called “The One After the Super Bowl” which, as the title suggests, aired after the NFL championship.

Friends Writers Say Matthew Perry Julia Roberts Flirted Over Faxing
Matthew Perry and Julia Roberts. Dave Lewis/Shutterstock; Douglas C Pizac/AP/Shutterstock

“Matthew asked her to be on the show,” Bright recalled in the interview, posted on Thursday, January 28. “She wrote back to him, ‘Write me a paper on quantum physics and I’ll do it.’ My understanding is that Matthew went away and wrote a paper and faxed it to her the next day.”

Related: 'Friends' Most Memorable Guest Stars

Alexa Junge, a former Friends writer, revealed to the outlet that the Whole Nine Yards star and Roberts talked about more than physics in their exchanges, however. “There was a lot of flirting over faxing,” she shared with The Hollywood Reporter. “She was giving him these questionnaires like, ‘Why should I go out with you?’ And everyone in the writers room helped him explain to her why. He could do pretty well without us, but there was no question we were on Team Matthew and trying to make it happen for him.”

Friends Writers Say Matthew Perry Julia Roberts Flirted Over Faxing
Matthew Perry and Julia Roberts on ‘Friends’. YouTube

Whatever the Friends writers came up with worked, according to Jeff Astrof, who also worked in the show’s writers’ room.

“I remember standing with her on the sidelines. She kept saying, ‘Chandler’s so funny!’ And I’m like, ‘I wrote every one of those lines!'” he shared. “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.”

Perry and Roberts dated until 1996, though both were private about their romance. The Pretty Woman star did briefly discuss her relationship with Perry on The Late Show With David Letterman in 1996 telling the show’s host she was intimidated when the Massachusetts native first approached her “because he’s awfully clever and funny and handsome.”

Related: Everything the 'Friends' Cast Has Said About the Reunion Special

After things between them fizzled out, both moved on with other partners. In 2002, the Golden Globe Award-winner married Danny Moder. Perry, meanwhile, has dated several high-profile actresses, including Mean Girls star Lizzy Caplan. In November 2020 he got engaged to Molly Hurwitz after two years of dating. They split in May 2020.

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