42 Wild Facts About the Show That Defined a Television Era – FRIENDS

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1Matthew Perry

After recovering from years of Opioid (specifically Vicodin and methadone) addiction, actor Matthew Perry (Chandler Bing from Friends) received a Champion of Recovery award from the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy for opening a sober living home in his Malibu mansion.


2. When Matt LeBlanc auditioned for the role of Joey in "Friends" he had only $11 dollars to his name. When the cast got their first paychecks, the first thing that Courteney Cox bought was a car and Matt LeBlanc bought a hot dinner.


3. In the 'FRIENDS' episode, where Susan and Carol (Ross' ex-wife) got married, "NBC expected thousands and thousands of phone calls and hate mails but actually received only four complaints by telephone."


4. Jennifer Aniston was offered a spot as a featured player on Saturday Night Live, but turned it down to accept the role of Rachel on Friends.


5. Jennifer Aniston personally owned Pat the Dog, the white, ceramic dog statue in Joey and Chandler's apartment. It was a gift to her on the first day of filming and the producers of Friends wanted to use it.


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6Bruce Willis

It's rumored that Mathew Perry made a bet with Bruce Willis that if "The Whole Nine Yards" (a movie in which both co-starred) opened at No. 1 at the box office, Willis would have to do a guest-appearance in Friends tv show for free. Willis lost the bet, and guest-starred in Friends.


7. The fake cigarette brand, 'Morley', has been featured in hundreds of movies and TV shows, including Seinfeld, Friends, and Frasier.


8. The tour guides of New York City tells tourists, that a fountain in Central Park is the F.R.I.E.N.D.S fountain. That fountain is actually in Warner Bros. Studios (LA).


9. Ellen Degeneres turned down the role of Phoebe Buffay on "Friends."


10. At NBC's insistence, the pilot episode of "Friends" was rewritten to include an older character who could give an advice to young adults. The new script was so bad that it was scrapped.


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11Monica and Joey

Before the show was cast, the main love interest was intended to be Monica and Joey.


12. Courteney Cox was originally asked to play Rachel, but she asked to play Monica instead after reading the parts.


13. In the opening credits of Friends: The One After Vegas (1999), the names of all the actors and crew were changed to include "Arquette" at the end of them, a gag on Courteney Cox Arquette, who had just recently married David Arquette.


14. At least four actors, Bruce Willis, Gary Oldman, Christina Applegate and Paul Rudd, have guest-starred on episodes of the show after doing a film with one of the regular cast members. Willis and Applegate won Emmys for their guest turns.


15. The orange couch used in Central Perk was found in the basement of the Warner Brothers studio.


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16How you doin'?

Joey's pick-up line, "How you doin'?" was ranked #4 in TV Guide's list of "TV's 20 Top Catchphrases" (21-27 August 2005 issue).


17. The Friends show's original theme song was "Shiny Happy People" by R.E.M., but was changed later to be "I'll Be There For You" by The Rembrandts.


18. In S10E12 of Friends, Phoebe's wedding was not attended by any of her relatives.


19. Hank Azaria once auditioned for the role of Joey Tribbiani. After being rejected, he begged to audition again. He auditioned and was rejected again, but he later appeared as David, Phoebe's scientist boyfriend.


20. The golden frame around the peephole was originally a mirror which Ricky Parker, a crew member, accidentally smashed. Because it looked good, they decided to leave it there.


21Final episode

Thirty-second commercial spots which took place in the final episode was sold in the UK for £1.2 million (approx $1.8 million). This is the most expensive commercial slots of any TV program in the UK, with the exception of sports.


22. When Tom Selleck made his initial on-set appearances, he received standing ovations from the audience. These would render his entrances unusable, prompting the need for later reshoots without the audience.


23. The Friends tv show debuted at a time when networks were beginning to eliminate theme songs during the opening credits; however, with the popularity of this theme song, "I'll Be There for You" which went to #1 on the "Billboard Hot 100" and had incessant play on both the radio airwaves and television video channels, the show helped quell that trend.


24. The Friends characters' full names are: Rachel Karen Green; Phoebe Buffay (in Friends: The One Where They All Turn Thirty (2001), she says she never knew her middle name since she had never seen her birth certificate and her twin sister, Ursula, sold it to a Swedish runaway); Joseph Francis Tribbiani Jr.; Chandler Muriel Bing; Ross Eustace Geller; Monica E. Geller (it is revealed that Monica's initials are MEG but her middle name is never actually specified).


25. There have been eleven Oscar winning actors/actresses who have appeared on Friends: Fisher Stevens, Charlton Heston, Sean Penn, Susan Sarandon, Helen Hunt, Julia Roberts, Reese Witherspoon, Robin Williams, George Clooney, Jim Rash and Brad Pitt.

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