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Why Julia Roberts & George Clooney Needed 80 Takes to Get Their Onscreen Kiss Right

The actors team up again for the upcoming rom-com, Ticket to Paradise.

They may both be Oscar-winners with extremely successful careers in Hollywood, but even Julia Roberts and George Clooney don't always nail their scenes on the first take—or even the 79th. The two actors and long-time friends are starring in the upcoming romantic comedy Ticket to Paradise (in theaters Oct. 21), and despite all their experience onscreen and their familiarity with each other, it took them forever to nail their big love scene.

The two have great chemistry on-screen and off—"There's some alchemy about us that you can sense from a distance, I think," Roberts recently told The New York Times—but these buddies had a hard time taking kissing each other seriously. Read on to see what the actors had to say about their real-life relationship and new movie.

READ THIS NEXT: The Worst Julia Roberts Movie of All Time, According to Critics.

Roberts and Clooney are close friends.

Roberts and Clooney have been friends for over 20 years, but according to Roberts, some people think it's been even longer than that. "We had been long reported as 'best friends,' but had never met before," she told Vanity Fair of first meeting Clooney ahead of 2001's Ocean's Eleven. They went on to star in three more movies together: Ocean's Twelve, Confessions of a Dangerous Mind, and Money Monster.

"What a relief we're not Hollywood friends," Roberts told People in 2016. "I just said to him an hour ago, 'Thank God we really do like each other, or we'd be in hell.'" Clooney added at the time, "[Roberts' husband] Danny [Moder] and I are great friends and love each other. What's fun is it's really like a family. It makes it easy. It's really fun to go, 'Hey, let's do this movie together.'"

They play exes in their new movie.

In Ticket to Paradise, Clooney and Roberts play a divorced couple who come together in an attempt to stop their daughter (Kaitlyn Dever) from marrying a man she just met in Bali. Though their characters are initially at odds in everything but their mission to break up the new couple, rom-com rules dictate that they rekindle their own romance along the way.

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They struggled to get through their kissing scene.

Julia Roberts and George Clooney at the Cannes Film Festival in 2016
Jaguar PS / Shutterstock

In their interview with The New York Times, the two actors opened up about the toughest part of playing onscreen lovers again, which was apparently the kiss.

"One kiss," Roberts said. "And we did it for, like, six months."

Clooney added, "Yeah. I told my wife [Amal Clooney], 'It took 80 takes.' She was like, 'What the hell?'" Roberts further explained, "It took 79 takes of us laughing and then the one take of us kissing."

"Well, we had to get it right," Clooney said.

Clooney shared another funny story about a love scene.

Julia Roberts and George Clooney at the American Cinematheque Award Honoring George Clooney in 2006
s_bukley / Shutterstock

In the same interview, Clooney shared that when he was first starting out, he had a different issue when it came to kissing a co-star.

"I remember early on in my career, I had to do a kissing scene with this girl and the director goes, 'Not like that,'" Clooney said. "And I was like, 'Dude, that's my move! That's what I do in real life!'"

He brought the story up in reference to a Ticket to Paradise scene in which he and Roberts dance awkwardly, which embarrasses their daughter. "It was sort of that same way here, because everyone had plans for how we should dance, and then we were like, 'Well, actually we've got some really bad dance moves in real life,'" he said. "Julia and I have done all those moves before, that's the sickest part." Roberts added, "Oh, all around the world."

Lia Beck
Lia Beck is a writer living in Richmond, Virginia. In addition to Best Life, she has written for Refinery29, Bustle, Hello Giggles, InStyle, and more. Read more
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