HBO Max is Footing the Bill for a ‘Friends’ Reunion

Disney+ launched yesterday and it was barely usable for the people who crashed the site to start streaming Mr. Boogedy and other Disney fare, maybe checking to see if watching the show with the girl they had a crush on as a teenager feels creepy (it is, except if it’s Christy Carlson Romano in Even Stevens).

All the hype Disney is getting over its new streaming service is probably why news about HBO Max commissioning a Friends reunion broke shortly after Disney’s streaming service launched.

The Hollywood Reporter broke the story that in addition to locking down the show for streaming, they’re also bringing back the original cast and producers for a reunion. Just don’t get too excited, it looks like it won’t be a new episode of Friends, they’re just going to get the cast in to talk about it, unless David Schwimmer suddenly learned how to do improv.

Talks are currently underway for an unscripted reunion special that would feature Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry and David Schwimmer, as well as series creators David Crane and Marta Kauffman. Sources caution that a deal is far from done and agreements with cast and creatives still need to be hammered out. When and if deals are completed, the challenge then becomes sorting out everyone’s schedules. Of course, the talks could fizzle and the whole concept could fall apart.

The funny thing about HBO spending so much money on Friends to launch their streaming service is the main reason Friends (and The Office) were so popular on Netflix is that they were on Netflix, which basically everyone has. And even then, mainly only because 30 Rock and Scrubs and How I Met Your Mother left for other services. Odds are good that when Friends and The Office leave Netflix people are just going to watch Frasier and New Girl instead of signing up for yet another streaming service.

Also, in the 25 years since Friends debuted, Courtney Cox and Jennifer Aniston have aged 25 years, which takes a lot of the appeal of watching Friends out of the equation.

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