The much-awaited Friends: The Reunion special premiered on Thursday, May 27 in the US on HBO Max and ZEE5 in India, the one-year anniversary of HBO Max’s launch. The original star cast Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry, and David Schwimmer returned 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.
During the conversation with the host James Corden, the cast was asked whether they had some sort of romance between them since they had worked together for 10 years and had a close bond. It was the first time David Schwimmer and Jennifer Aniston, who played Ross and Rachel in the show, admitted to having a crush on each other in season 1 but never actually progressed with it. "The first season, we– I had a major crush on Jen," Schwimmer admitted, to which Aniston replied, "It was reciprocated."
"At some point, we were both crushing hard on each other," Schwimmer continued. "But it was like two ships passing because one of us was always in a relationship. So and we never crossed that boundary. We respected that."
Matt LeBlanc, in his typical fashion, jokingly fake-coughed and said, "Bulls**t."
"We just channeled all of our adoration and love for each other into Ross and Rachel," Aniston further said. "I remember saying one time to David, 'It's gonna be such a bummer if the first time you and I actually kiss is gonna be on national television. Sure enough, the first time we kissed was in that coffee shop."
"We would spoon and fall asleep on the couch," Aniston confirmed. "And I'm thinking, how did not everyone know we were crushing on each other?" Schwimmer smiled. "We knew," Matthew Perry responded and Courteney Cox agreed saying, "We knew, for sure!"
"It was a situation that we, we couldn't do anything about it," Schwimmer said. Courteney Cox pointed out, "If you had, and it didn't work out, it would have probably not been as great."
Friends: The Reunion featured a variety of special guest appearances including David Beckham, Justin Bieber, BTS, James Corden, Cindy Crawford, Cara Delevingne, Lady Gaga, Elliott Gould, Kit Harington, Larry Hankin, Mindy Kaling, Thomas Lennon, Christina Pickles, Tom Selleck, James Michael Tyler, Maggie Wheeler, Reese Witherspoon and Malala Yousafzai.
Ben Winston directed the special and executive produced along with Friends executive producers Kevin Bright, Marta Kauffman, and David Crane. The special hails from Warner Bros. Unscripted Television in association with Warner Horizon, Fulwell 73 Productions and Bright/Kauffman/Crane Productions. Aniston, Cox, Kudrow, LeBlanc, Perry, and Schwimmer executive produced the special. Emma Conway, James Longman and Stacey Thomas-Muir co-executive produced.
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