Since Friends debuted in 1994 until the broadcast of its last episode and even more than 17 years after its end, it is still considered one of the most popular comedies in the recent history of the entertainment industry worldwide. Starring Jennifer Aniston, Matthew Perry, Lisa Kudrow, Courteney Cox, Matt Leblanc and David Schiwmer, it had a great impact that was also partly responsible for the members of the long list of guest stars who stepped on its different film sets.
Artists like Robin Williams, Billy Cristal, Brad Pitt, Tom Seleck, Bruce Willis, Ellen Pompeo, Reese Witherspoon, Christina Applegate and George Clooney, to name a few, were seen sharing memorable scenes with the cast of Friends, many of which were no strangers to fun. behind-the-scenes stories. But no appearance caused more of a stir, even from the very moment it was planned, like when it was Julia Robert’s turn.
In an epic cameo, Julia Roberts played the character of Susie Moss in the Season 2 episode The One After the Superbowl: Part 2. When Chandler runs into Susie, a former classmate he used to pick on, and the two they have a date. Although she was part of the group of the first special appearances that the series had two years after its debut (in January 1996), it has always been one of the most commented on due to the circumstances in which it occurred.
The producers of Friends knew that if they wanted to include key plot elements to boost ratings, one of them was to attract incredible celebrity guest stars. And who was more famous in the mid-’90s than Julia Roberts? Although the successful artist agreed to appear in a very special episode, she first made a specific request to actor Matthew Perry that still surprises and provokes comments today.
The episode in question includes Rachel (Jennifer Aniston) and Monica (Courteney Cox) fighting over the chance to date Jean-Claude Van Damme, Joey (Matt LeBlanc) falling for an obsessed fan (played by Brooke Shields), and Chandler (Matthew Perry) reconnecting with a former classmate (Julia Roberts) who secretly hates him from their time as students.
At the time that the production of Friends approached Julia Roberts for a cameo, the actress had a busy schedule and she didn’t need to appear on a sitcom to enhance her fame because she already had it to spare. However, to everyone’s surprise, she stated that she was willing to join the already very popular show under a very strange and specific condition.
An interview from the past made to the showrunner Marta Kauffman, was the one that revealed everything after it happened with such good results to the point that Julia ended up dating Perry for a year.
“Getting Julia Roberts was incredibly exciting. We knew she would have the right touch for it. And when she said yes, it was pretty amazing.”
“Do you know the story of how we got it? Matthew (Perry) asked her to be on the show and she said, ‘Write me a paper on quantum physics and I’ll do it.’ I understand Matthew left, wrote an article and faxed it to you the next day.”