The cast of ‘Friends’ deliberately sabotaged jokes

The Friends series has made its viewers laugh all over the world. Less funny: one of its screenwriters affirms that it happened to the actors to deliberately sabotage certain jokes. The Guardian returns to its revelations.

In her autobiographical book End Credits – How I Broke Up with Hollywood (“End credits – How I broke up with Hollywood”) which will be published on October 12, 2023, Patty Lin makes some surprising secrets. “The actors sometimes seemed to disagree with the slightly old-fashioned turn the series was taking: they wanted it to open up to other horizons”, reveals, for example, the one who worked on the script for the seventh season.

“Far from the lightness that one can expect from the filming of a sitcom”

According to her, the actors deliberately ruined jokes so that they were cut during editing or rewritten: “They all knew how to trigger general hilarity, but if they didn’t like a joke, they sabotaged it because they knew we were going to rewrite it.” What form did this sabotage take? According to the screenwriter, they “mutter the lines” that they disapproved of.

She continues, “The actors would very much like their characters and say they would never do this or that. They were sometimes right, but very often, these moments were imbued with aggression, far from the lightness that one can expect from the filming of a sitcom.

Beyond the casting, the screenwriter also denounces the work environment: “My colleagues were a bit old-fashioned and were reluctant to integrate the new ones, they did not make them feel welcome.”

Over the past few seasons, several actors from…


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