Perry asked the Oscar winner to feature as his character Chandler Bing's old classmate on the hit sitcom over some flirty faxes, but the actor had to hit the books to pull off the dream appearance, which aired in 1996.
Kevin Bright, Friends' executive producer, told The Hollywood Reporter, "Matthew asked her to be on the show. 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."
The stars continued to exchange amorous messages, and Perry ended up recruiting the show's writers to help him craft the perfect response and land himself a date with Roberts.
Alexa Junge, a former "Friends" writer, recalled, "There was a lot of flirting over faxing. 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."
Jeff Astrof, who also worked in the show's writers' room, shared of the "Pretty Woman" beauty's cameo, "I remember standing with her (Roberts) on the sidelines. She kept saying, 'Chandler's so funny!' And 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."
The romance lasted from 1995 to 1996, and although they were both very private about the relationship, Julia previously admitted she was initially intimidated by Perry "because he's awfully clever and funny and handsome."
Roberts ended up marrying cinematographer Danny Moder, the father of her three children, in 2002, while Perry recently got engaged to Molly Hurwitz in November (20) after two years of dating.