The actress recently stated that she almost didn’t earn the role of Phoebe. No one else in the group had to go through the audition process more than once because of a misunderstanding between Kudrow and director James “Jimmy” Burrows.
In 1993, Kudrow was mistakenly cast as Roz on Frasier by the show’s director, who had previously worked on Friends. After filming the pilot, Kudrow was fired from Frasier by Burrows. In my opinion, I was cast in the wrong movie. She said, “I didn’t realize that at the time.” After reading the script during the table read, I thought, “Oh Jim doesn’t like me or my work.”
When Burrows was up for the role of Phoebe Buffay a year later, she had to jump through a few hoops in order to get the job done. ‘Jim Burrows’ required a particular audition for me.
But in between all of that I had to read for Jim Burrows,” Kudrow recalled of the time she spent going in to read for producers and studios and the network. For some reason, she didn’t realize that she had to go through a particular audition to get the role of Phoebe, “so Jimmy would be comfortable with the fact that I played her,” she said.
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However, even after Kudrow granted his blessing, he was still in danger. A personal grudge against her and seeing him as the pilot’s director made her feel like she’d lost. ‘Ugh, f Jimmy Burrows is directing this,'” I muttered on the set of the pilot. He appeared to be “dejected rather than angry,”” he said.
She even thought he was sabotaging her on the set at first. We were about to conduct a run-through and Kudrow was asked to read her Phoebe monologue under the table since she was “out there,” she said on Jess Cagle’s podcast with Julia Cunningham.
Despite Kudrow’s disapproval of the direction, he obeyed and performed the sequence from under the table as instructed. When I realized I couldn’t communicate with anyone, I was shocked. In a fit of rage, she yelled, “If you need to explain how much my character doesn’t belong with these individuals… The co-creator of the popular sitcom Friends, David Crane, complimented Lisa on her performance, saying, “Lisa, it’s wonderful that you’re under the table,” but “I’m not sure that works.”
Unfortunately, Burrows threw Kudrow under the bus much like he did the table, but thankfully, the narrative has a happy end. According to Friends actor Crane, “I just said, ‘OK, yeah,'” he recalled saying. Nonetheless, Jimmy revealed that he came up with the idea, and then I realized that I could rely on him.
Actress Lisa Kudrow Discusses Her Audition for Friends
The performer revealed that she had to audition twice for the role of Phoebe Buffay in Friends with director Jim Burrows. Frasier fired her because she was “mistakenly cast,” and he didn’t want her back.
Later in the discussion, she added, “I knew Jim figured it out from the table read, and so, ‘Oh, he’s not going to like me or what I do.'” The performer had to audition for the show’s director to see if he was comfortable with her portraying the role.
She then added that she and her co-stars had to perform a “special audition” for the director. She only learned about this requirement a few years ago, and she was the only member of the cast who was subjected to it.
She stated, “To play Jim Burrows on “Friends,” though, we’ll need to conduct a unique audition. I had to go in and read for Jim Burrows in between all of the other auditions and networking I had to do. A few years ago, I learned that I was the only one who had to do it. Because I wanted to make sure that Jimmy was okay with my playing Phoebe.”
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More about “Friends”
Friends, a popular sitcom that aired from 1994 to 2004, is still popular today. Lisa Kudrow, Matthew Perry, Courteney Cox, Matt LeBlanc, David Schwimmer, and Jennifer Aniston played six New York City pals in the film.
Lisa Kudrow was nominated for an Emmy in the category of Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series for her work as Phoebe Buffay.
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