Paul Rudd and Wife Julie Yaeger Are Hollywood’s Most Un-Hollywood Couple
When Paul Rudd met his future wife Julie Yeager, little did he know that she would end up being his life partner and best friend.
He’s a widely loved actor. She’s a successful entertainment publicist turned screenwriter. Yes, Paul Rudd and wife Julie Yaeger have the makings of an A-list Hollywood couple — and yet, they’re incredibly un-Hollywood.
The pair met in 1995, on the heels of Rudd’s big break in the cult classic Clueless — and they have been together ever since. However, the public knows little about their relationship, despite more than two decades of happiness. Over the years, Paul Rudd and Julie Yaeger have remained far, far away from tabloid headlines without ever having to sacrifice their careers. How is that possible? Perhaps it’s because they’ve always prioritized family.
What We Can Learn from Paul Rudd & Julie Yaeger’s Romance
Paul Rudd has made a name for himself playing funny, lovable characters in films like Anchorman, Knocked Up, The 40-Year-Old Virgin and Marvel’s Ant-Man. His big break arrived in 1995, when he played Josh in the teen comedy Clueless. However, that was also a time when not everything was going well for him.
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He was robbed at gunpoint and lost a friend in an auto accident that same year. Then his car was stolen, his rental destroyed in a hit-and-run, and his second replacement was hit — all in the span of a week. That series of unfortunate events resulted in a “meltdown” and, eventually, the decision to move to New York.
As Paul recalled in a 2018 interview with Marie Claire UK, Clueless writer and director Amy Heckerling, told him, “You need to get a publicist.” So that’s what he did. He set off to the Big Apple to pursue his dreams, but once again, things got off to a rough start. Or did they? If not for his frazzled arrival in New York City, he might never have met his future wife.
How Paul Rudd & Julie Yaeger Met
According to Nylon Guys, “When [Rudd] arrived in the city, he went straight to his publicist’s office with his luggage. As he was late for an audition, a girl working there offered to drop off his bags at his friend’s apartment.” That “girl” was none other than Julie Yaeger. A few days later, Paul asked her out to lunch.
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He recalled that the first person he met in New York was his future wife. “We started talking, and there was a maturity with her,” he told Marie Clair UK. She had experienced some tragedy in her life, I had too, and the impression I got was, wow, this is a woman. This isn’t a girl.”
“I was really taken with who she was and how she had overcome and was in the process of overcoming adversities in her life,” Paul continued. “There was a perspective that she had and still has on the world that you don’t come to easily — it’s earned and most people don’t have it at such a young age.”
In 2003, the pair said “I do” after eight years of dating. Paul Rudd and Julie Rudd had their first child, son Jack Sullivan Rudd, in 2004, followed by daughter Darby Rudd in 2009.
The Rudds Are Exceptionally ‘Normal’
Paul Rudd explained to Elle in 2011 how he stays out of gossip columns by revealing just how “normal” he and his wife really are. “I don’t think I’m going to sell a lot of tabloids,” he said. “My wife and I have been together for 16 years. My parents were married my whole life until my father passed away a few years ago.”
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Their two kids are pretty normal, too. When Rudd’s then-10-year-old son Jack found out his dad would be playing a superhero in Ant-Man, his response was priceless: “Well, I can’t wait to see how stupid that’ll be.” Ouch!
I identify myself as a parent and a husband way more than somebody who rides around on the back of an ant.Paul Rudd
Despite the fame, accolades and impressive $70 million net worth, Paul Rudd prides himself most on being a family man. As he told Marie Claire UK, “I don’t come from a family of actors, I didn’t grow up around it and so when I go to Los Angeles for work, or to a premiere, I like it because it feels like I’m just popping in.”
And if there’s one thing he likes more than being a dad, it’s being a dorky dad. “My favorite thing is when they roll their eyes because it’s such a dad joke, but I know they find it funny,” he told Mr Porter in 2018. “They kind of try to fight a smile.”
You Can Glimpse Paul & Julie’s Lives on the Big Screen
Paul Rudd and Julie Yaeger may have mastered the art of being the most un-Hollywood couple in Hollywood, but if you want to know more about what makes them tick, just turn to their films. As it turns out, their home life has inspired Paul and Julie as artists. In fact, if you watch one of their movies, you’ll be able to catch a glimpse of what their union is really like.
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Speaking in 2012 with the Jewish Journal, Rudd confirmed he and Julie recorded their unfiltered, everyday conversations to help with the writing of Judd Apatow’s This Is 40. (It’s a romantic comedy about a married couple struggling with the idea of turning 40.)
While it’s not traditionally romantic, I would say it’s arguably romantic in its intimacy. The idea that a couple can do that for each other is very romantic.Paul Rudd
Paul’s character get a hemorrhoid check in one of the film’s more memorable scenes. As the told the magazine, that’s about as real as it gets. “Sometimes in a real marriage, it’s about asking your wife to look at this and what does that look like?” he reasoned.
“I also think that in a strange way, being able to fart in front of each other — that’s a very sweet gesture!” he added.
How Paul & Julie Inspired ‘Knocked Up’ & ‘Fun Mom Dinner’
The lovebirds have also inspired some of Apatow’s other projects. “Actually, there were more specifics in Knocked Up,” Paul said of his art imitating life. “When Judd was writing that movie, my wife once said, ‘I’m so sick of looking at your back,’ because I was just on the computer all day, checking my fantasy football scores.”
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When Paul Rudd’s wife Julie, the producer ofThe Suite with Dave Karger, turned to screenwriting, it was only natural she’d use their life as inspiration. While writing 2017’s Fun Mom Dinner (which Paul executive produced and co-starred in), she wanted to show what a real marriage looks like, so she based some of the scenes on her own family.
The comedy is about a group of moms who have a surprise-filled night out while the dads have a surprisingly good time watching the kids. “The cliché would be that the dads are idiots and are going to mess everything up,” Julie told the New York Post, “[but] I wanted them to be great.” Just like husband Paul Rudd was great with son Jack and daughter Darby while Julie was off shooting the film.
Another truth-filled scene occurs when one of the fathers reveals the key to a happy marriage is giving your partner two compliments per day. “It’s meant to say, ‘It’s not that hard to keep women happy,’” Julie explained. “It greases the wheels of a marriage.”
‘Sexiest Man’ Paul Rudd Isn’t Who You Think He Is
Paul Rudd is known for his comedic roles and, of course, for being People magazine’s 2021 Sexiest Man Alive. However, there’s a lot more hiding underneath the surface. Like the fact that fatherhood showed him there’s nothing wrong with crying.
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Opening up to Mr Porter, Paul revealed, “I’ve experienced more profound moments in my life: my dad dying, being a parent. All of a sudden, your sensitivity is heightened. I see things on TV like Undercover Boss ,and they knock me to the ground. My kids make fun of me. ‘Oh, Dad’s crying again.’”
I have always felt like jokes can help a situation. It’s important that we all just remember to laugh. Because life’s hard.Paul Rudd
There’s a whole other side to his personality, which he saves for his wife and family. As he told The Independent, “In my private life, I’m dealing with all the scars and traumas and real stuff from living my real life. When I’m in public, I’m giving a very filtered, smooth version of it.
“I’ve never done an interview where my guard is down,” Rudd continued. “It’s just unavoidable. I’m never totally relaxed.” There is one thing that remains the same between his two personas, however, and that’s humor. It’s another key to marital bliss — and a happy life overall.
Paul Rudd & Julie Yeager Focus on What’s Important
By always keeping the focus on what’s important — each other — and not allowing the promises of fame to impact their No. 1 priority — their family — Paul Rudd and wife Julie Yaeger have done what many Hollywood couples only dream of.
Over 25 years, they’ve built a supportive, loving environment that’s incredibly “normal.” And yet, it allows them to thrive in the entertainment world as well. Add to that they recognize the importance of laughter and not taking themselves too seriously. That’s the reason Paul Rudd and Julie Yaeger will surely be together for decades to come.
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