“Unhappily Ever After” helped put Kevin Connolly on the Hollywood map, but privately, the actor experienced his first major heartbreak following an ill-fated romance with one of his co-stars on the WB series.

On Monday’s episode of the “Hey Dude… The 90s Called!” podcast, Connolly opened up about his “pretty terrible” split from fellow actor Nikki Cox while the two were appearing on “Unhappily Ever After,” which ran from 1995 to 1999.

“Nikki Cox, who played my sister, and I started dating between Seasons 4 and 5,” Connolly said. Their relationship appeared to be going smoothly when the future “Entourage” star received a distressing phone call from Jeremy London.

“He said, ‘Get in your car, drive down to 7-11 and open the National Enquirer,’” Connolly recalled. “I get in the car and drive up the street. I’ve got a knot in my stomach and start flipping through into the Enquirer, and there’s a picture of Bobcat [Goldthwait] and Nikki dating.”

Kevin Connolly experienced his first major heartbreak with one of his “Unhappily Ever After” co-stars, Nikki Cox.

It didn’t help, Connolly added, that Goldthwait was also one of his “Unhappily Ever After” colleagues. Just days after learning about his former girlfriend’s new romance, he had to appear alongside Cox and Goldthwait for a table reading.

“It was pretty terrible. Yeah, I was gutted,” he said. “I couldn’t eat. I couldn’t sleep. It was one of those jobs.”

Created by Ron Leavitt and Arthur Silver, “Unhappily Ever After” followed the lives of the Malloy family, which was headed by a schizophrenic father, Jack (played by Geoff Pierson). Goldthwait provided the speaking voice of Mr. Floppy, a toy rabbit who essentially served as Jack’s conscience.

Cox and Bobcat Goldthwait were engaged but never got married. They called off their relationship four years later.
Cox and Bobcat Goldthwait were engaged but never got married. They called off their relationship four years later.

Matthew Simmons via Getty Images

Connolly and Cox portrayed two of Jack’s three children, Ryan and Tiffany, respectively. Later seasons of the show would feature their characters more prominently in storylines focused on their high school and college escapades.

Though Cox and Goldthwait were later engaged, the couple never married and, by 2005, had called off their relationship. In 2006, Cox wed actor-comedian Jay Mohr, with whom she shares a 12-year-old son, Meredith Daniel. She and Mohr divorced in 2018.

Despite their tense split, Connolly and Cox are on good terms these days.

“Her and I have stayed in touch over the years,” he said. “We catch up once in a while. Not much has changed there.”

Catch Connolly’s “Hey Dude… The 90s Called!” appearance below. His comments about his relationship with Cox begin around the 9:00 mark.