To be honest: Cavorting around with a bunch of people in a fountain seems like a particularly bad idea during a global pandemic. It was under this context that the anticipated Friends unscripted reunion special for HBO Max was initially delayed, having originally been set to debut around the same time as the debut of HBO Max itself. But now, we finally have an answer to when they’ll begin filming this special with the returning original cast, thanks to original cast member Matthew Perry himself.
The HBO Max Friends reunion special will feature Perry (Chandler), Jennifer Aniston (Rachel), Courteney Cox (Monica), Lisa Kudrow (Phoebe), Matt LeBlanc (Joey), and David Schwimmer (Ross). And while he didn’t cite any official HBO or Warner Media press report, so we should perhaps take it with a grain of salt, here’s exactly what Perry said about the new filming date, via his official Twitter account:
“Friends reunion being rescheduled for the beginning of March. Looks like we have a busy year coming up. And that’s the way I like it!”
For those of you doing the math at home, that’s March of 2021, a time and place when we can be hopeful about a world more better managing of the coronavirus pandemic, allowing a safer space for six acclaimed television comedy actors to reminisce and a crew to watch them all. I’m also intrigued by Perry’s claim that “we have a busy year coming up”. Is he referring to the entire Friends cast? Are there some surprise pieces of new Friends content the gang is doing beyond this already-planned reunion? Or is Perry just busy as a human and talking about all the errands he has to run? We’ll await further official HBO Max press releases to clarify.
The Friends reunion special is executive produced by the entire cast, original EPs Kevin Bright, Marta Kauffman and David Crane, Emma Conway (The Kacey Musgraves Christmas Show), James Longman (Never Mind the Buzzcocks), and director Ben Winston (The Late Late Show with James Corden). For more on Friends, here’s a professional evaluation on Ross and Rachel’s relationship (i.e. were they on a break?).