Skip to main content

100 Fun "Friends" Facts

  • Author:
  • Updated date:

Kally writes about TV shows and films. She also writes about trivia and facts.

Here are some facts and trivia that you may (or may not) know about the popular sitcom, "Friends."

Here are some facts and trivia that you may (or may not) know about the popular sitcom, "Friends."

Facts and Trivia, 1-10

1. In 1993, Matthew Perry co-wrote and pitched a sitcom to NBC about a group of twenty-somethings called Maxwell's House; the network turned it down as they already had a show in the works that was similar.

2. The show had many names before settling with the name Friends: Friends Like Us, Six of One, Across the Hall, Once Upon a Time in the West Village, and Insomnia Cafe.

3. "Shiny Happy People" by REM was the original choice for the theme song for the show and was used in the pilot when the show was still called Friends Like Us.

4. The Producers David Crane and Marta Kauffman co-wrote "I'll Be There for You" with Phil Solem and Danny Wilde of the Rembrandts. Used for the theme song for all ten series.

5. In 1995, the song reached number 1 in the Billboard Hot 100 Airplay chart for eight weeks.

6. Phoebe and Chandler were originally intended to be written as supporting characters.

7. Monica and Joey originally intended as the main couple.

8. In early development, writers considered making Chandler gay.

9. When Lisa Kudrow and Courteney Cox first read their scripts they thought Chandler was gay.

10. When the show premièred Matthew Perry and Jennifer Aniston were 25, Matt LeBlanc and David Schwimmer were 27, Courteney was 30 and Lisa Kudrow was 31.


Trivia and Facts, 11 - 20

11. The frame around the peephole in Monica's apartment was initially a mirror but was broken accidentally by a crew member but they agreed it looked better that way and kept it.

12. The apartments were initially 4 and 5 however the producers realised that it corresponded with the apartments being on the lower floors and changed it to 19 and 20.

13. The Orange couch in Central Perk was found in the basement of the Warner Bros Studios.

14. The couch was almost always free for the six friends because it was reserved; there was always a reservation sign on the coffee table. Except from when Ross and Chandler were bullied and Chandler's hat was taken. Fans questioned why it was always available to the gang; it was later added in an episode where they say it was permanently reserved for them.

15. We only find out four of their middle names throughout the seasons; Chandler Muriel Bing, Rachel Karen Green, Ross Eustace Geller and Joseph Francis Tribbiani Jr. We do however know Monica's middle name begins with an 'E' and Phoebe has a middle name but couldn't find out because Ursula sold her birth certificate.

16. Season 2 didn't air a Thanksgiving episode.

17. Ellen DeGeneres turned down the role of Phoebe.

18. Christina Applegate was cast as Amy Green (season 9 Thanksgiving episode) when Reese Witherspoon was unavailable to reprise her role as Jill.

19. Three cast members of the Simpsons made guest appearances; Dan Casellaneta (Homer) as the Zoo Keeper, Hank Azaria (Moe/Apu) as David the scientist and Harry Shearer (Mr Burns/Smithers) as Dr. Baldhara.

20. Hank Azaria auditioned for the role of Joey twice.


Trivia and Facts, 21-30

21. Jennifer Aniston later stated that she hated the now-iconic "Rachel" haircut.

22. Courteney Cox was the only one to never get nominated for an Emmy on the show.

23. Bruce Willis guest starred on Friends for free after losing a bet with his co-star Matthew Perry on a Whole Nine Yards that it would reach number one in the box office on the opening weekend. He was already scheduled to appear on the show then donated the money he earned from Friends to charity.

24. James Michael Tyler was the only extra to gain a regular part because he knew how to work the espresso machine.

25. James Michael Tyler was working in Hollywood coffee shop when he got the role of Gunther.

26. Gunther had no name until the middle of season 2.

27. Gunther got his first line in the 33rd episode; he said "yeah".

28. Ben Geller was played for four boys; Michael Gunderson as an infant; twins Thomas and John Christopher Allen during Seasons 3-5; and Cole Sprouse during Seasons 6-8.

29. Marcel the monkey was played by two monkeys; Katie and Monkey.

30. Crew Member Paul Swain was responsible for the Magna Doodles on the door of Chandler's Apartment for each episode shot there.


Trivia and Facts, 31 - 40

31. NBC originally thought that the cast was too young and asked writers to include an older character to give advice.

32. NBC also thought that Central Perk was too trendy and wanted to set the show in a diner, like Seinfeld.

33. Producers initially wanted Courteney Cox to play Rachel; however she felt she was more like Monica.

34. Erica and Jack (Monica and Chandler's twins) were born 3 minutes and 46 seconds apart.

35. Like Monica and Chandler; Courteney and David (her husband) found it hard to conceive in real life. However, in the last season Courteney is seen wearing baggy clothes and scarves to hide her pregnancy.

36. The scene with Rachel having Emma was filmed not long after Courteney had a miscarriage.

37. Ross was 29 for 3 years. In one season he even had two birthdays.

38. David Schwimmer directed 10 episodes of Friends.

39. David Schwimmer was also the first to be cast; it was later revealed that the writers had written the character of Ross with intentions of David Schwimmer playing the part.

40. Jennifer Aniston was the last to be cast.


Trivia and Facts, 41 - 50

41. When in London and Monica is seen to pop up from underneath Chandler's bedsheet, they had been held in position for 27 seconds.

42. All six cast members have kissed one another except from Monica and Phoebe.

43. Joey wasn't written as a dim character; Matt LeBlac suggested it.

44. Matt LeBlanc started going grey in his twenties and had to have his hair dyed throughout the series.

45. Malcom (Ursula's stalker and later Phoebe's boyfriend); portrayed by David Arquette, at that point Courteney Cox's future husband.

46. Yasmine Bleeth and Julia Roberts were fantasizes of Chandler's in the show; and in real like Matthew Perry had dated both of them.

47. "The One Where No One's Ready" was filmed entirely in Monica's apartment as after having guest stars the show didn't have a large enough budget for additional sets.

48. Lisa Kudrow was actually afraid of the duck.

49. No live audiences were used when they were filming cliff hangers.

50. Before the pilot aired, the cast were taken to Caeser's Palace in Las Vegas to enjoy their "last shot at anonymity". They later returned to film at this location for Ross and Rachel's wedding.


Trivia and Facts, 51 - 60

51. In the opening credits of "The One After Vegas", everyone had Arquette added to their last name; to commemorate the marriage of Courteney and David.

52. Remarkably none of Phoebe's relatives attended her and Mike's outdoor wedding.

53. Ross and Rachel's romance were not meant to be the central to the show; however, the storyline was developed after the chemistry David and Jennifer had on screen.

54. Courteney Cox is older than David Schwimmer in real life, despite playing his younger sister on screen.

55. The fridge in Monica's apartment was fully functional and was always stocked with drinks for the cast and crew.

56. Matthew Perry told the producers that he was awkward with women; there the writers wrote his character Chandler that way.

57. Phoebe's triplets were written into the show because Lisa Kudrow was pregnant in real life and the writers needed to have a way of incorporating the pregnancy and not having a child amidst the group.

58. In the pilot Monica forgets the name of the guy she sleeps with, worried the audience would not like her character; the handed out a survey to the studio audience and asked if they wanted the plot to change. They didn't.

59. Although the TV show sold millions of different types of merchandise; they only produced two soundtracks.

60. Before filming each episode; the cast would huddle round wishing each other luck.

Trivia and Facts, 61 - 70

61. The final episode was watched by 52.46 million viewers and is ranked fourth most watch TV finale in US History.

62. On average, each episode took five hours to film.

63. In the first season each cast member were being paid $22,500 per episode; in 1997 the group together negotiated with the show and got $100,000 per episode (it was the first time in TV history); and by the end of the series they were each paid $1 million per episode.

64. Kathy was the second woman to date both Joey and Chandler; Ginger was the first.

65. Janice came up with her catchphrase "oh my God" accidentally and had to say it annoyingly throughout her guest appearances.

66. Lisa Kudrow made a guest appearance on Mad About You as Ursula Buffay before friends; the writers had to make Phoebe a twin in order for fans to understand the crossover and cameos.

67. Winona Ryder and Susan Saradon were both on Ross's "celebrity list"; they both later guest starred as Melissa Warburton and Jessica Lockhart.

68. In the last episode the gang said that at one point or another they had all lived in Monica's apartment; they have also all lived in Chandler's.

69. During Season 1, the street outside of Central Perk was actually a painted backdrop.

70. The artwork within Central Perk always changed.


Trivia and Facts, 71 - 80

71. Frank Jr, portrayed by Giovanni Ribisi; was Phoebe's younger half brother; he was also the young man who mistakenly dropped a condom in her guitar case whilst she was busking outside of Central Perk.

72. When Chandler and Monica were getting married, Rachel needed to find a new officiate because they didn't think Joey would make it. She found a Greek Orthodox Priest and said it was for her friends the Anastassakis/Papasifakis wedding. Anastassakis is in fact Jennifer Aniston's family name.

73. In the episode "The One With The Dollhouse"; six replica dollhouses were made as the plot would mean it would be set alight.

74. The door to the secret closet within Monica's apartment actually led to the area backstage and had to be covered with things when Chandler managed to get in to see.

75. Monica, Rachel, Joey and Chandler live in flats 19 and 20, 90 Bedford Street, New York.

76. The set designer Greg Grande also worked on the spin off series Joey.

77. The ceiling beam in Monica's apartment that inconsistently appears in episodes gets reinstalled whenever James Burrows directed an episode as part of an inside joke.

78. The movie poster behind the TV in Monica's apartment was put there to hide the hole where the camera's would film.

79. Although the series is based in New York City, not a single shot was filmed there.

80. Matt LeBlanc had $11 to his name when he auditioned, with his first pay check he bought a hot meal; the first thing Courteney Cox bought was a car.


Trivia and Facts, 81 - 90

81. The big white dog in Chandler's apartment reportedly said by Courteney Cox that it belonged to her husband David Arquette.

82. However, it is said to have belonged to Jennifer Aniston, it was supposedly given to her a gift before the series started as a good luck present.

83. It's no surprise that there are contradictions within the plot; like "The One Where Chandler Doesn't Like Dogs", but yet he and Monica discuss a future family with a dog; and Ross states he doesn't like ice cream but we have seen him enjoying one with Elizabeth and one with Marcel.

84. June Gable who plays Joey's agent Estelle Leonard also plays a nurse in the episode when Carol has Ben.

85.The actor that plays Rachel's boyfriend Joshua's father is Matthew Perry's real like father John B. Perry.

86. Phoebe's address is Apartment 14, 5 Morton Street, New York

87. The show received a lot of heat for having Pottery Barn product placement in "The One With The Apothecary Table".

88. Peter Roth of Warner Bros once said it "offset the high cost of production" and a rep reported "the phones still light up every time the episode airs".

89. In the final season when Rachel visits her father, the exterior of the house was the same as the one made famous by the Steve Martin movie "Planes, Trains and Automobiles".

90. The doors to the bedrooms in Monica's apartment actually took you onto the set of Central Perk. The bedrooms were made up when they were needed for a scene.


Trivia and Facts, 91 - 100

91. "The One After The Superbowl" aired in 1996, it is ranked the highest viewer ratings.

92. Jon Faveau turned down the role of Chandler; however portrayed Pete, one of Monica's boyfriends.

93. Jon Cryer also auditioned for Chandler.

94. The opening credits was actually filmed at Warner Bros Studios; not at Gramercy Park or Central Park.

95. Lisa Kudrow hated playing the guitar at first.

96. Kathy Griffin and Jane Lynch both auditioned for Phoebe.

97. Tom Selleck who played Richard Burke, would often get very loud applauds from the live studio audience and the producers would have to re-shoot the scene without the audience watching.

98. Some of the laughter from the show's live audience was cut in scenes so the next punch line wasn't lost.

99. When the series ended Jennifer Aniston and her then husband Brad Pitt hosted a dinner party. They served bottles of wine the producer Kevin Bright had saved from the first series.

100. Each cast member was also given a piece of side walk from outside Central Perk as a keepsake.

Want more?

© 2015 Kally


Kally (author) from Scotland on April 04, 2018:

Hey sorry for the late reply, we don't technically see Ross living in the apartment but in the finale, it does get mentioned that during his time in the city learning to "dance" he lived there

Poppy from Enoshima, Japan on December 19, 2017:

I really enjoyed reading all these! I didn’t know that Joshua’s dad was played by Matthew Perry’s actual dad, that’s really interesting. I think you might be mistaken on the one where you said everyone lived in Monica’s apartment, though. Ross didn’t, from what I remember. I liked this article a lot!