“I would say we’ve remained friends,” the actor, 49, said in the cover story for Esquire‘s April/May 2021 issue. “We don’t talk every day, but we call each other. We FaceTime. We text.”
The Wanderlust star was addressing his habit of posting birthday messages for Aniston, 52, on Instagram, even years after their split. “Happy Birthday to this fierce Woman,” he wrote in February 2019. “Fiercely loving. Fiercely kind. … and fiercely funny. ❤️ you B.”
According to the Zoolander 2 writer, these missives are just a reflection of the pair’s enduring friendship. “Like it or not, we didn’t have that dramatic split, and we love each other,” he told Esquire. “I’m sincere when I say that I cherish our friendship. We can not be together and still bring each other joy and friendship. Also, she makes me laugh very, very hard. She’s a hilarious person. It would be a loss if we weren’t in contact, for me personally. And I’d like to think the same for her.”
The couple announced their breakup in February 2018 after seven years together, two-and-a-half of which were spent as husband as wife. “In an effort to reduce any further speculation, we have decided to announce our separation,” they said in a joint statement to Us Weekly at the time. “This decision was mutual and lovingly made at the end of last year. We are two best friends who have decided to part ways as a couple, but look forward to continuing our cherished friendship.”
The duo never addressed what led to them calling it quits, but Theroux now claims the problem wasn’t distance or a disagreement about where to live — reports at the time suggested that she preferred Los Angeles while he wanted to live in New York City. “That’s a narrative that is not true, for the most part,” he said. “Look, people create narratives that make themselves feel better or simplify things for them. That whole ‘This person likes rock ‘n’ roll, that person likes jazz. Of course!’ That’s just not the case. It’s an oversimplification.”
As for why he still maintains a friendly rapport with the Friends actress, he explained that it’s a simple matter of the love they shared changing forms. “I think that when you get good at relationships — and here I am, single — if you love the person the same way you loved them in the relationship, it would behoove you to love them the same way out of the relationship,” he said. “Who wants to take a s—t while you’re walking out the door?”Listen to Us Weekly's Hot Hollywood as each week the editors of Us break down the hottest entertainment news stories!
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