Lisa Kudrow Reveals Why She Was Convinced Friends Would Run for Much Longer Than It Did

Prior to the debut of the Friends reunion, Lisa Kudrow explained why she was certain the show would last for many more seasons than its actual 10.

By Ryan Gajewski May 20, 2021 7:32 AMTags

Lisa Kudrow truly believed that Friends would be NBC's lobster. 

The 57-year-old Emmy-winning actress was a guest on The Late Show on Wednesday, May 19, where she and host Stephen Colbert discussed her beloved NBC comedy ahead of its highly anticipated reunion launching Thursday, May 27 on HBO Max. 

During the chat, Stephen revealed that years ago as a fledgling actor, he once auditioned for a tiny role on a single episode of Friends but didn't get the part. This led him to ask his guest whether she fears, as he has, that when she's not working, it's possible she may never get another gig again. 

"Oh, yeah," she agreed. "I always feel like, 'Well, I will never work again.' And then I do, like a miracle."

Lisa then added, "But I was going to say—no, while I was on Friends, I thought, 'I will always be working because there's no end in sight for this show.'"

Stephen pointed out that it was indeed on for quite a while, given that it premiered in September 1994 and signed off in May 2004 while still ranking among the most highly rated shows on TV at the time. 

The 25 Best Friends Episodes

"Yeah, it was on for 10 years," the Booksmart performer continued. "But I just thought, 'This could go on forever.'" Certainly, plenty of fans still wish she'd been right.

As for the taping of the reunion, Lisa shared, "It was thrilling and a little emotional." 

NBCU Photo Bank

She also recalled once taking an online quiz that claimed to reveal which Friends character she is, and she humorously did not get Phoebe. Instead, the quiz informed her she's actually Rachel. 

"I thought I was answering questions that would bring me to Phoebe—you know, 'Favorite color? Yellow!'" she continued. "And it said Rachel."

This led her to explain that when she first read the script for the Friends pilot to audition for the show, she indeed saw herself as better suited for playing the character that would ultimately be brought to life by Jennifer Aniston

"When I first read the script, and I was going to be auditioning for Phoebe, I saw [the pages for] Rachel, and I just went, 'Oh, that's like a Long Island JAP—that could be hilarious. I can identify with that more.' But they said, 'No, no. Phoebe,'" the star said. 

Ultimately, Lisa kinda got her initial wish, as the show continues to live on in fans' hearts, even if new episodes aren't on the horizon. Clearly, the star takes the words "I'll be there for you" quite seriously. 

Click here to watch the trailer for the Friends reunion before the special debuts on HBO Max on Thursday, May 27.

(E! and NBC are both part of the NBCUniversal family.)