Julia Roberts was left speechless after learning that she is not in fact a "Roberts."
The stunning revelation was made Wednesday on PBS' "Finding Your Roots" with host Henry Louis Gates, Jr., who after researching the actor's family tree, discovered a hidden centuries-old secret — that Julia Roberts' supposedly great-great-grandfather, Willis Roberts, actually died more than a decade before her great-grandfather was born.
Willis was married to Julia Roberts' great-great-grandmother Rhoda Suttle Roberts since the 1850s, but he died in 1864, leaving a questionable gap.
"Oh, wait — but am I not a Roberts?" Julia Roberts asked Gates Jr., who then explained that he was able to trace her back to a man called Henry McDonald Mitchell Jr.
"So we're Mitchell's?" Julia Roberts asked.
"You're Julia Mitchell," the historian confirmed. "You are not a Roberts, biologically."
Gates Jr. also noted that Mitchell was married while having an affair with Julia Roberts' great-great-grandmother Rhoda, who lived "just four households" away from his mother. He had six of his own children.
At first, all Julia Roberts could muster up was "Wow" in response to the news.
When asked how she felt about her newfound ancestry, Julia Roberts admitted that "on the one hand, my mind is blown."
"And it is fascinating," she continued. "And on the other hand, there's part of me that, when I'm calmer, can still wrap my arms around the idea that my family is my family. And I do prefer the name Roberts."
The actor added that it was all "very unexpected" as Gates Jr. wrapped up his findings by explaining that Mitchell Jr. seemingly disappeared from the paper trail in the late 1800s.
Earlier this month actor Edward Norton, who was featured on the PBS show's premiere episode, discovered that his 12th great-grandmother was 17th-century Powhatan woman Pocahontas. Gates. Jr. revealed that Norton's ancestry can be traced directly back to the earliest days of colonial America in Virginia, when Pocahontas married English settler John Rolfe in 1614, according to People.
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