After months (or, at this point, years) of rumors and anticipation, the Friends reunion of our dreams is going to become a reality. The cast is set to gather for a special on HBO Max, HBO’s new streaming service launching in May, to honor the iconic sitcom’s 25th anniversary. As we wait for what will be Jennifer Aniston‘s perfect behind-the-scenes Instagrams from the set, we’re laying out everything we know about the project so far.
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All of the stars are coming back.
Jennifer Aniston (Rachel), Courteney Cox (Monica), Lisa Kudrow (Phoebe), Matt LeBlanc (Joey), Matthew Perry (Chandler), and David Schwimmer (Ross) will reunite at the original Friends soundstage—Stage 24, at the Warner Bros. Studio in Burbank—to film. All six stars will also executive produce.
The Late Late Show writer Ben Winston will direct. He’s also an executive producer, along with Friends EPs Kevin Bright, Marta Kauffman, and David Crane; and Emma Conway and James Longman.
When the reunion news was announced, the leads all shared the same photo and caption on Instagram—”It’s happening”—and tagged each other. (Good thing Aniston and Perry are now on the app.) The image, shot by Mark Seliger, is from the May 18, 1995 issue of Rolling Stone.
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There’s no title or release date yet.
Although HBO Max goes live in May 2020, it’s unclear if the special will debut on the same day as the streaming service.
The entire series is also coming to HBO Max.
Now that Friends is off Netflix, the series—all 236 episodes of it—will find an online home at HBO. Get ready to stream it nonstop in May.
The cast will reportedly make millions.
Sources told The Hollywood Reporter that the stars negotiated their fees together and will be paid between $2.5 million and $3 million each for the reunion special. That’s much more than the $1 million-per-episode rates they had when Friends was still running.
Production has been postponed due to coronavirus.
Like other shows and movies during the global pandemic, the Friends special is adjusting its filming schedule. The project was initially slated to film on March 23 and 24 in Burbank, but now production has been “delayed until at least May,” according to The Hollywood Reporter. The new filming date is still unclear, as is the release date for the final product.
Watch this space for updates.
This article originally appeared on Harper’s BAZAAR US.
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