Entertainment

Friends reunion: Lisa Kudrow shares she is ‘thrilled’

The Friends reunion will air on HBO Max on May 27, it was shared on Thursday. 

And soon after star Lisa Kudrow told Extra she was very happy to get back together with Jennifer Aniston, Matthew Perry, Courteney Cox and David Schwimmer.

‘It was really emotional, and watching it again, watching it I got emotional all over again,’ the Comeback star shared.

There for you: The Friends reunion will air on HBO Max on May 27, it was shared on Thursday. And soon after star Lisa Kudrow told Extra she was very happy to get back together with Jennifer Aniston, Matthew Perry, Courteney Cox and David Schwimmer 

Touching: 'It was really emotional, and watching it again, watching it I got emotional all over again,' the Comeback star shared

Touching: ‘It was really emotional, and watching it again, watching it I got emotional all over again,’ the Comeback star shared

Kudrow, who played Phoebe Buffay, added, ‘It’s also really just so thrilling. We got to be together and [Matt] LeBlanc tells a story like no one else, he is so great. I laugh a lot, that’s my contribution.’

And she is impressed with the lineup of guest stars that includes Lady Gaga, Justin Bieber, Reese Witherspoon and many more.

Lisa revealed, ‘I was surprised — we all were. There’s a lot of big open mouths.’

Earlier she said on Instagram: ‘The one with us finally getting together.’  

The teaser shows the cast walking arm-in-arm on a studio lot with the theme song I’ll Be There For You playing at a slower temp.

As well as featuring the original six cast members, the special will include a slew of celebrity special guests, including Justin Bieber, Cindy Crawford, Lady Gaga and Malala Yousafzai. 

Excited: 'It's official! The #FriendsReunion premieres May 27th on @HBOMax — could we BE any more excited?! ❤️,' Aniston shared in her Instagram caption; seen in 2020

Excited: ‘It’s official! The #FriendsReunion premieres May 27th on @HBOMax — could we BE any more excited?! ❤️,’ Aniston shared in her Instagram caption; seen in 2020

The other Friends weighed in as well. 

‘It’s official! The #FriendsReunion premieres May 27th on @HBOMax — could we BE any more excited?! ❤️,’ Aniston shared in her Instagram caption. 

Cox wrote, ‘This kind of thing doesn’t happen every year, or even every 10, or 15 years. I feel so blessed to have had a chance to reunite with my Friends… and it was better than ever.’ 

Perry added, ‘We’re back! The #FriendsReunion premieres May 27th on @HBOMax. What are you the most excited about?’  

Exciting: The highly anticipated Friends reunion has a release date on HBO Max

Exciting: The highly anticipated Friends reunion has a release date on HBO Max

And so did LeBlanc: ‘So great to see you everyone.’ Schwimmer mentioned Matt: ‘Finally! Had a blast with the cast and a solid nap with LeBlanc.’ 

According to a press release, the show will be called Friends: The Reunion and HBO Max will debut the special on May 27, which is the one-year anniversary of HBO Max’s launch.

The Friends stars ‘return to the iconic comedy’s original soundstage, Stage 24, on the Warner Bros. Studio lot in Burbank for a real-life unscripted celebration of the beloved show.’

Aniston, Cox, Kudrow, LeBlanc, Perry, and Schwimmer executive produced the special. 

Cute: The special was teased as The One Where They Got Back Together

Cute: The special was teased as The One Where They Got Back Together

Fresh look: The name and logo for the show as well as the release date and studio were shared

Fresh look: The name and logo for the show as well as the release date and studio were shared

Good company: There will also be a variety of special guests including Reese Witherspoon, Elliott Gould and Tom Selleck

Good company: There will also be a variety of special guests including Reese Witherspoon, Elliott Gould and Tom Selleck

There will also be a variety of special guests including Reese Witherspoon, Elliott Gould and Tom Selleck.

Reese, Elliott and Tom were guest stars on the original series. Witherspoon played Aniston’s younger sister and now works with her on The Morning Show. Elliott starred as Jack Geller, the father of Monica and Ross Geller Selleck was the lover of Cox’s character Monica. 

Other guest stars are David Beckham, Justin Bieber, BTS, James Corden, Cindy Crawford, Cara Delevingne, Lady Gaga, Kit Harington, Larry Hankin, Mindy Kaling, Thomas Lennon, Christina Pickles, James Michael Tyler, Maggie Wheeler and Malala Yousafzai.

The cast back in the day: Ben Winston directed the special and executive produced along with Friends executive producers Kevin Bright, Marta Kauffman, and David Crane

The cast back in the day: Ben Winston directed the special and executive produced along with Friends executive producers Kevin Bright, Marta Kauffman, and David Crane

10 years: The series - about six pals that live in the same apartment complex in New York - aired from 1994 until 2004

10 years: The series – about six pals that live in the same apartment complex in New York – aired from 1994 until 2004

Ben Winston directed the special and executive produced along with Friends executive producers Kevin Bright, Marta Kauffman, and David Crane. 

The special comes from Warner Bros. Unscripted Television in association with Warner Horizon, Fulwell 73 Productions and Bright/Kauffman/Crane Productions. 

Emma Conway, James Longman and Stacey Thomas-Muir co-executive produced.

The series – about six pals that live in the same apartment complex in New York – aired from 1994 until 2004. 

The stage: Original set decorator Greg Grande took to Instagram to share: 'Sssh! Somethings happening, deja vu... coming alive once again! #friends'

The stage: Original set decorator Greg Grande took to Instagram to share: ‘Sssh! Somethings happening, deja vu… coming alive once again! #friends’

The Friends reunion special was filmed over a three-day period in April.

Sources told TMZ that the famous water fountain from the original show’s opening credits would be used.

The fountain, which is located on the Warner Bros. Ranch in Burbank, California, will make its return, while the special was filmed on the same stage on the Warner Bros. Studios lot that the original show was filmed in. 

The site also reports that a live audience participated in the reunion, who were mostly non-union extras who were COVID-19-screened for the special. 

Makeup: Perry actually sent a snap from his makeup chair on set to his Instagram followers, though it was quickly deleted

Makeup: Perry actually sent a snap from his makeup chair on set to his Instagram followers, though it was quickly deleted 

Perry actually sent a snap from his makeup chair on set to his Instagram followers, though it was quickly deleted.

‘Seconds before eating a makeup brush. Not to mention reuniting with my Friends,’ Perry captioned the deleted snap.

Production designer Greg Grande also strongly hinted at the fountain’s presence in the special, sending out a snap of a couch and chairs set up in front of the fountain.

Production designer: Production designer Grande also strongly hinted at the fountain's presence in the special, sending out a snap of a couch and chairs set up in front of the fountain

Production designer: Production designer Grande also strongly hinted at the fountain’s presence in the special, sending out a snap of a couch and chairs set up in front of the fountain

While little is known about the reunion, it’s not expected to be a narrative scripted program, but instead a conversation with the stars with a live audience watching.

Schwimmer also hinted during an appearance on The Graham Norton Show in April that the actors would still get into character at some point.

‘I’m going to LA to shoot the Friends Reunion. I will get to see everyone for the first time in years,’ he said.

‘I’ll be David. Nothing is scripted and we are not in character. We are all ourselves, although there is one section of it that I don’t want to give away, but we all read something,’ he added cryptically.   

Friends reunion: Lisa Kudrow shares she is 'thrilled'

 

The special event has been in the works since February 2020 with a film date of March 2020.

Originally, the reunion was supposed to debut in May 2020 as part of HBO Max’s launch but when the COVID-19 pandemic arrived, causing chaos in the film and TV industry, production plans were scuppered.

HBO Max announced in April of last year that the show would not be filmed in time to debut at the streaming service’s launch and the sit-down was pushed back to August 2020.

As the pandemic raged, that date was also abandoned. Matthew Perry tweeted in November that the taping was officially rescheduled for March but even that date was delayed according to the latest from Schwimmer.

Reunion: Schwimmer also hinted during an appearance on The Graham Norton Show that the actors would still get into character at some point

Reunion: Schwimmer also hinted during an appearance on The Graham Norton Show that the actors would still get into character at some point

‘Friends reunion being rescheduled for the beginning of March. Looks like we have a busy year coming up. And that’s the way I like it,’ Perry wrote at the time.

Fans have oftentimes called for there to be a scripted reunion in which the cast return as their characters for a one-off special. Yet the prospect of this appears to have been nixed by the series’ creators.

Sitcoms such as Will & Grace and Roseanne [later becoming The Connors] were revived in recent years to much fanfare, and Frasier is the latest said to be going through a reboot.

Yet Friends seems destined to be left as it was, in 2004, with only reruns keeping the fans satiated.

FRIENDS: WHERE ARE THEY NOW?  

 

All of the six actors –  Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matthew Perry, Matt LeBlanc and David Schwimmer – have moved on with their careers in showbusiness. Here is a look at how they have changed since the end of the show in 2004. 

 

JENNIFER ANISTON, 52

Friends reunion: Lisa Kudrow shares she is 'thrilled'

Friends reunion: Lisa Kudrow shares she is 'thrilled'

Aniston: The star played Rachel, left, and then went on to make movies such as Along Came Polly and Marley & Me, and more recently Murder Mystery. She is now on the series The Morning Show with Reese Witherspoon

 

COURTENEY COX, 56

Friends reunion: Lisa Kudrow shares she is 'thrilled'

Friends reunion: Lisa Kudrow shares she is 'thrilled'

Cox: She played neat freak Monica. Next came Ace Ventura, and TV’s Cougartown. Now she is working on another installment for the Scream movie franchise with her ex David Arquette

 

LISA KUDROW, 57

Friends reunion: Lisa Kudrow shares she is 'thrilled'

Friends reunion: Lisa Kudrow shares she is 'thrilled'

Kudrow: She played ditzy Phoebe on the hit series. And then she popped up in films such as Analyze This. Lately she has had success with her show The Comeback

 

MATT LEBLANC, 53

Friends reunion: Lisa Kudrow shares she is 'thrilled'

Friends reunion: Lisa Kudrow shares she is 'thrilled'

LeBlanc: He starred as actor Joey who chased plenty of women. Matt has since starred in several TV series including Joey, Episodes and Man With A Plan

 

MATTHEW PERRY, 51

Friends reunion: Lisa Kudrow shares she is 'thrilled'

Friends reunion: Lisa Kudrow shares she is 'thrilled'

Perry: He was bumbling romantic Chandler. The star went on to work in movies like Fools Rush In, The Whole Nine Yards and 17 Again

 

DAVID SCHWIMMER, 54

Friends reunion: Lisa Kudrow shares she is 'thrilled'

Friends reunion: Lisa Kudrow shares she is 'thrilled'

Schwimmer: He starred as nerdy Ross who was into dinosaurs. Now has had one of the most diverse careers, doing on voice work for Madagascar and Tangle as well as performing on stage. He last did TV’s Intelligence

 

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