George Clooney’s Best Friend: Why He Dumped Elisabetta Canalis

 Kevin Mazur/

George Clooney and Elisabetta Canalis' matchmaker saw the writing on the wall long ago.

"I always knew that it wouldn't last," Manuele Malenotti, Clooney's best friend in Italy, tells Chi magazine.

Malenotti, who owns Italian bike gear company Belstaff, introduced Clooney, 50, and the model, 32, at a dinner party two years ago. "I was the one who got them together," says the entrepreneur, who has known Clooney for ten years. "George wanted to meet Elisabetta and he asked me to make the introductions."

The couple announced their split two weeks ago. "To be honest I was expecting it," Malenotti says.

He explains of the split: "All I can say is that George, when it comes to love, has decided that he is not going to get married again and he is not going to have any children and he won't change his mind."

(Clooney has been vocal about his distaste for remarrying, while Canalis recently said she was "firm believer in marriage.")

Also at issue? According to another insider, Canalis was a bit of a spotlight hog. "On vacations, she'd spend forever in her room, primping in her bikini, then go strolling on the beach for photographers to snap pictures of her," a source tells the new Us Weekly. "She was obsessed with the attention she got."

Adds pal Malenotti in Chi: "Big stars like George need people by their side to help them and they are always under immense pressure. For a partner it's never easy because everybody has their own requirements."

One fallacy Malenotti clears up: Rumors that the relationship was a publicity stunt, and that Clooney is gay.

"I introduced them, I saw them together and I can say that their love story was very intense. In two years they shared numerous moments," he insists.

"He opened the doors of his life to her, introducing her to his friends and family. I totally exclude that it was all made up…I have spent a lot of time with him and a lot of women have passed through his life. You never know in life, and men are having an identity crisis but I can tell you George is not gay."

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