Roberts was born in Atlanta, Georgia, on October 28, 1967, in Crawford Long Hospital.
Julia along with her Mother, Step-father (Michael Motes), and Sister (Lisa) moved to
Smyrna, Georgia in 1972, where Julia grew up. Julia attended Fitzhugh Elementary School,
Griffin Middle School, and Campbell High School in Smyrna.
Smyrna, Georgia, is located
Northwest of Atlanta on Highway 285. Smyrna is a progressive city of 33,500 citizens.
Julia is the daughter of Walter
Roberts who was a vacuum cleaner salesman, an actor, and a writer. Her mother, Betty
Motes, was a church secretary and actress.
Julia has a sister, Lisa (born
1965), a brother Eric (born 1956), and a half-sister, Nancy Motes (born 1976). Lisa is an
actress as is Eric Roberts. Lisa was in "Something To Talk About" with Julia,
and Eric was in Julia's first movie - "Blood Red."
Walter and Betty wed in 1955 after
touring military bases in a production of "George Washington Slept Here" (which
was directed by Ron Howard's father - Rance). Her parents divorced in 1972 when Julia was
only four, and her father, with whom Roberts shared a deep attachment, died of cancer when
she was just nine. Julia has said that the death of her father altered every philosophy of
life she ever had. While both of her parents were experienced in acting, it was Julia's
goal in life to become a veterinarian. However, following graduation from Campbell High
School in Smyrna, Julia joined her sister Lisa in New York and set out for an acting
High School Days:
After flirting while working summer
jobs in 1984 at an Atlanta ice cream shop, Bill Knight, now 28, and Julia Roberts, 28,
began dating. But by November their romance had fizzled. "It was an
infatuation," Knight says now, "and it lasted as long as infatuations
last." Nonetheless, they remained friends and, that spring, Roberts, a senior at
Campbell High School in Smyrna, Ga., asked Knight, a junior at Atlanta's Lovett School, to
her prom. "She looked charming--she had her hair all done up nicely," recalls
Knight, who escorted Roberts in his Oldsmobile. "She was a lot of fun to hang out
with." Later that evening, Knight--who had to take a college entrance exam the next
day--kissed Roberts an early good-night. Though they wrote a few times, he never saw
Roberts after she moved to New York City that fall. Now earning his MBA at the University
of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Knight, whose girlfriend works in sales at the Georgia
Dome, is tickled by his ex's success. "It's turned out to be a little amusing,"
he says. "You don't think of your friends being in the movies." Julia graduated
from Campbell High School in 1985.
Early Movie Career:
Following high school graduation,
Julia joined her older sister Lisa in New York and set out for an acting career. In 1987
Julia earned a small part in the movie "Firehouse." Not having much luck at
first, Julia's brother Eric talked the director of "Blood Red" into allowing his
sister to join him in the cast in 1988, along with veteran actor Dennis Hopper.
Later in 1988, "Mystic
Pizza" and "Satisfaction" were released, which introduced Julia and her
talents to the public, in her first real roles. One year later "Steel Magnolias"
almost instantly made Julia "America's Sweetheart" as she played the role of
Shelby amidst veteran actresses such as Sally Field, Shirley MacLaine, Dolly Parton,
Darryl Hannah, and others. Julia's acting career was established. "Pretty Woman"
followed the next year and suddenly (with a lot of hard work) the shy young girl from
Smyrna was a celebrity, with all that goes with stardom.
Julia married Lyle Lovett, the
country music star, on June 27, 1993, in Marion, Indiana; the marriage ended on March 27,
1995. However, the two are still good friends today.
The actress has several puppies and
a German shepherd-husky mix named "Diego." Julia's hobby is knitting, and it is
reported that she knits on the set between scenes and even teaches those on the set how to
Julia's production company is
named "Shoelace Productions" and is located in New York City and her film agency
is ICM (International Creative Management); Elaine Goldsmith-Thomas is Julia's agent.
Julia's publicist is Marcy Engelman of Dan Klores Associates located in New York City. It
is estimated that "America's Sweetheart" has grossed over $2.3 billion worldwide
in her short career. Julia Roberts owns a duplex apartment in New York, a house in the
Hollywood Hills, and a fifty acre retreat near Taos, New Mexico.