Lisa Kudrow: ‘Friends wouldn’t have an all-white cast if it was made today’


Lisa Kudrow wants Friends fans to view the show as a “time capsule” and not judge it by contemporary standards.

The hit sitcom has come under scrutiny in recent years for its lack of diversity, but actress Lisa, 56, who played Phoebe Buffay, insists the show was of its time.

Speaking to U.K. newspaper The Times, Lisa reflected on how different the show would look if it was a current production.

“It would not be an all-white cast, for sure,” she shared. “But, to me, (Friends) should be looked at as a time capsule, not for what they did wrong.”

Lisa added that she thinks Friends, which aired from 1994 to 2004, was quite “progressive”.

“There was a guy whose wife discovered she was gay and pregnant, and they raised the child together,” the star explained. “We had surrogacy, too. It was, at the time, progressive.”

She went on to insist the show, also starring Jennifer Aniston, Matt Le Blanc, Courteney Cox, Matthew Perry, and David Schwimmer, is still relevant to fans today, commenting: “Yes, it’s a fun comedy, but it’s also about people connecting, and part of what appeals about it now is that young people have this unconscious nostalgia for personal connection. And not just right now during the pandemic, but before that.”

The cast will reunite for a special to be aired on new streaming platform HBO Max, with filming delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic.