Watch Julianna Margulies Explain How George Clooney Saved Her Career With One Phone Call

Julianna Margulies reached out to fellow ER alum George Clooney for his 60th birthday, in part because she credits him for keeping her career alive with a single phone call. See her explain.

By Ryan Gajewski May 07, 2021 8:27 AMTags
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Julianna Margulies' career-defining role came with her part on the beloved NBC medical drama ER, and as it turns out, she credits co-star George Clooney for helping make that experience happen.

The 54-year-old actress visited Jimmy Kimmel Live on Thursday, May 6, where host Jimmy Kimmel asked whether she'd sent George anything that day, as it was his 60th birthday

"I wrote to him yesterday because I wanted to write to him on the last day of his 50s," she revealed. "I thought it would be fun to say—well, I call him 'Doug,' he calls me 'Carol.' It's something we've always done."

She continued, "And I said, 'On this, your last day of being 50, I just want you to know that when you're 90, and you look back and see how young 60 was, you will curse the day you wasted time thinking you're getting older, or that you're too old. So also, what's your address, I want to send you my book.'"

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Julianna laughed and admitted she indeed sent him a copy of her new memoir, Sunshine Girl: An Unexpected Life. The actress, who portrayed Carol Hathaway as a series regular on ER from its 1994 launch until the sixth season, also divulged she considers the Ocean's Eleven star to be a key reason why she still has a thriving Hollywood career. 

"I have to give credit where credit is due," she continued. "And George, I give him tremendous credit for helping launch my career. Because he happened to make a phone call and went out of his way to tell me not to take another job, because he thought they might keep me as a series regular. And because of that phone call, I ended up on ER."

She went on to describe a night from her early years when she was working as a waitress, and the team from the 1990 film Flatliners came into her restaurant after having just wrapped the film. The party consisted of 20 people, including Julia Roberts, Kiefer Sutherland and director Joel Schumacher



Julianna referred to the group as a "tough table" and explained that people kept changing seats, so the meals would go to the wrong people. She also recalled about their dinner, "It had been a rough night, and there were a lot of demands."

Luckily, it had a happy ending, as Joel came back 10 minutes after the party left to hand her a hundred-dollar bill, on top of the sizable tip he had already left. Julianna said the filmmaker told her, "I know you pool your tips—that table was really difficult, and I'm sorry—and this is for you."

Check out her interview in the above video.

(E! and NBC are both part of the NBCUniversal family.)