Friends Exposed: 30 Shocking Moments of Personal Struggles and Turmoil Behind the Laughter

By Jack Ripley | January 15, 2024

Courteney Cox Made Everyone Nervous

Welcome to our exploration of the fascinating behind-the-scenes drama of the beloved 1990s TV show Friends. While we laughed along with Ross, Rachel, Joey, Monica, Chandler, and Phoebe, there was a lot of happening behind the scenes that viewers never saw. From personal struggles and intense pressure to addiction and potential cast changes, there was plenty of drama taking place among the cast and crew.

In this gallery, we'll dive deep into some of the most intriguing and eye-opening stories from behind the camera, including Matthew Perry's battle with addiction, David Schwimmer's struggle with depression during the height of the show's fame, and Jennifer Aniston's desire to leave the hit series. We'll examine the challenges they faced and the ways in which they impacted the show's production and overall legacy.

So, whether you're a die-hard Friends fan or simply interested in the behind-the-scenes workings of a hit TV show, we invite you to join us on this journey into the drama and intrigue of Friends. Keep reading to uncover the secrets that only those on set knew and gain a deeper understanding of the people behind the characters we all know and love.

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(NBC)

Before the cast got to know one another they were terrified of working with Courteney Cox. Not only was she the star of the "Dancing in the Dark" video, but she had been a regular on numerous TV shows in the late '80s while everyone else was - at best - jobbing it out in movies like Leprechaun. Matthew Perry says that Cox dispelled any sense of a hierarchy early on in the show's run:

It was our second day of work, and we went outside on a break together.  She said, 'This is an ensemble show. I think we should really all try to help each other out.'

Kathleen Turner did not have a good time behind the scenes on Friends.

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(NBC)

It's hard not to recognize the unmistakable voice of Kathleen Turner, best known for her iconic role as the sultry Jessica Rabbit. So when she joined Friends in 2001 as Chandler's transgender parent, fans were excited to see her on the small screen. But little did she know, her time on set would be anything but smooth sailing.

Turner recently shared that she was shocked by how the six core cast members supposedly treated her. Her main gripe seemed to center around a chair and a pair of grueling high heels. It's not clear what exactly happened, but it's clear that Turner was not pleased with her treatment on set. Despite this, her portrayal of Chandler's parent remains a memorable part of the show's later seasons. She told Vulture:

I remember I was wearing this difficult sequined gown — and my high heels were absolutely killing me. I found it odd that none of the actors thought to offer me a seat. Finally, it was one of the older crew members that said, 'Get Miss Turner a chair.' The Friends actors were such a clique — but I don't think my experience with them was unique.