Eric Roberts adores his loving wife, the woman who thought he was gay in their first meeting

Eliza Garrett is the wife of star Eric Roberts. You almost never see the two apart, but the story of their first meeting might not be what you expect. 

I was certainly surprised the first time I heard it…


Eric Roberts started his illustrious career in the 1970’s, earning three Golden Globe nominations for his first film, “Runaway Train”.

His immediate notoriety meant the star was catapulted into fame, starting with his next major roles in major films such as “King of the Gypsies,” and “Star 80.”

Unfortunately, as with most rapidly built things, Roberts’s career almost collapsed soon after it began. The star fell victim to drugs, battling addiction for a large period of time. Eric often consumed cocaine in particular, hurting his work and putting him in dangerous situations. 

Meeting his now-wife is one of the largest factors that helped him break the pattern. 

The couple met on a flight from New York to Los Angeles. Roberts has jokingly explained that his wife hates when they talk about their first meeting, but the couple did lay out the details in an interview with Lifestyle Magazine TV.

During the flight, both of them were reading movie scripts. At one point, they both closed their scripts at the exact same time, paving the way for the start of their first conversation. 

While speaking, Roberts realized that the woman he was speaking with had a father he recognized. Eliza Garett’s father, David Rayfiel, was Eric’s favorite screenwriter. In their Lifestyle interview, Garett explained:

”So there were all these strange connections. . . . But I thought he was probably gay because he was very pretty and had a cat on his lap named Tender.”


Of course, she soon realized otherwise when Roberts’ intentions were revealed. Eliza went on to discuss what she found so intriguing about Roberts:

“He’s had the bad-boy image from age 19 to 59, and still the crush-worthiness of him spans generations and genders.”

The couple dated for six years before finally marrying in 1992. They have stood by one another every second since then, including at the lowest points of Eric’s career. 

Garret was raised in Hollywood by way of her famous father, and she herself is an accomplished casting director and actress. Her credentials include “Tasmanian Devil,” “Dr. Who: The Movie,” and “National Lampoon’s Animal House.”

In her marriage to Roberts, Garret eventually had to pay a hero as well, helping her husband to get out of his drug use. 

Roberts explained to Vanity Fair that drug use was common on the sets he found himself in, and he fell victim to the temptation there. 

Eventually, his addictive behavior got to the point where Eliza forced him to choose between her and cocaine. 

At about that time, Roberts also lived through a traumatic car accident that affected his speech and mobility. His injuries led to a decline in film offers.

Eliza pushed her husband to accept B-movie roles, of which he eventually rounded up over 250 roles. Her support and acceptance helped him to move past the reputation of an occasional B-list actor and become a versatile force to be reckoned with. 


The unwavering support and communication they share have helped the couple to keep the magic alive. Roberts once explained

“I was on a trip for only three days and I thought, ‘God, I hate being away from her!’ I can’t stand it, because I got old with her, this is my roommate, my pal, my confidante, my manager, the girl I kiss.”

The pair has been married for over 30 years and counting. Despite the misconceptions at their first meeting and the challenges they have faced over the years, it is clear that their union will only continue to get better with age. 


What do you think of the journey Eric Roberts has had? Let us know!