In the early ’90s, Jennifer Aniston and Lisa Kudrow met for the first time at the table read for “Friends.” They didn’t know it at the time, but the two characters that they were be playing — Aniston’s Rachel Green and Kudrow’s Phoebe Buffay — would become two of the most beloved in TV history.
In an interview for Variety‘s Actors on Actors issue, on newsstands this week, Aniston and Kudrow discussed their current TV roles. Aniston is a frontrunner in this year’s Emmys race for best actress in a drama for her portrayal of anchor Alex Levy on “The Morning Show.” And Kudrow delivers buzzy supporting turns in two Netflix comedies — “Feel Good” and “Space Force.”
More from Variety
- Jennifer Aniston Deconstructs Her Tour-De-Force Breakdown on 'The Morning Show'
- The One Where Jennifer Aniston and Lisa Kudrow Have a Glorious 'Friends' Reunion
- Variety, PBS SoCal Takes 'Actors on Actors' Virtual with Jennifer Aniston, Zendaya, Chris Evans
But as they got to talking, they quickly recalled what it was like to be at that “Friends” table read. “You were wearing an appropriate Phoebe Buffay — like a white linen, hippie shirt, and you had a bunch of seashells and necklaces on,” Aniston said. “And you had your hair pulled up in two little clips, and you had these little blond tendrils. So, so, so beautiful! And Courteney [Cox] had on a pink baby tee with a white trim.”
“Gee whiz!” Kudrow said. “I was trying to get into the character.”
Aniston later told a story about finding “Friends” clips on the Internet. “This one time I was with Courteney, and we were trying to find something to reference, an old ‘Friends’ thing,” Aniston said. “And then we stumbled on — there’s bloopers online — and we sat there at the computer like two nerds watching these bloopers laughing at ourselves.”
Aniston revealed what it’s like for her to revisit the show now. “Here’s what I love, is when I watch an episode, I’ll usually remember where we broke during the scene,” Aniston said. “You and I would always get into these fits of laughter because you had this wonderful ability to — you were about to hit your punchline, and you would do this adorable thing where you would break. You would say the punchline, and you would always turn to the audience and say, ‘I’m sorry, it’s really funny.'”
“I didn’t want to ruin it,” recalled Kudrow, who hasn’t been revisiting Phoebe. “I don’t watch the show. I’m still not watching it in the hopes that one day we sit down and watch them together.”
When it’s safe to film again, the six cast members of “Friends” will sit down together for a reunion special for HBO Max. “That will be really great,” Kudrow said. “I can’t wait to do that.”
For more from Variety‘s conversation with Aniston and Kudrow, read our full story here.
Best of Variety
- ‘Jaws’ Anniversary: 10 Movies That Are Better Than The Book
- The Best Movies on Netflix
- Everything Coming to Netflix in June