Lisa Kudrow says she originally wanted to play Rachel in ‘Friends’


(CNN)The role of zany massage therapist Phoebe Buffay made Lisa Kudrow a household name — but she originally believed she was a better fit for another “Friends” character.

Appearing on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” via video link on Wednesday, the Emmy award-winning actress revealed that when she initially auditioned for the show, she was actually drawn to Rachel Green’s character, subsequently played by Jennifer Aniston.

“It’s funny because when I first read the script, and I was going to be auditioning for Phoebe, I saw Rachel and I just went, ‘Oh, that’s like a Long Island JAP (Jewish-American princess) — that could be hilarious. I can identify with that more.’ But they said, ‘No, no. Phoebe,'” Kudrow explained.

    The 57-year-old may have been on to something, because her initial instinct was recently confirmed after she took to a Buzzfeed quiz to find out which “Friends” character she most resembled.

      “I thought I was answering questions that would bring me to Phoebe,” she said. “Favorite color? Yellow! Or something like ‘Who would you want to be on a date with?’ ‘SpongeBob!’ Then it just said ‘Rachel.'”

        During her appearance on the show, Kudrow also gave some details of the highly anticipated “Friends” reunion special, which is set to premiere later this month.

        “(It had been) 17 years since our last show and we haven’t all been in the same room in like five or six years,” she told Colbert. “And then Covid delayed this whole thing so much that it was so … it was thrilling and a little emotional.”

          She went on to explain that the producers of the reunion had rebuilt all the sets.

            “I think we were meant to be excited about seeing the set, and everyone was but me because I wanted to see the people.”

            “Friends: The Reunion” special debuts May 27 on HBO Max, which, like CNN, is part of WarnerMedia.