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Archives: Were The Cast of FRIENDS Really Friends?

Updated: Dec 27, 2022

Were Courtney Cox and Jennifer Aniston best friends like their onscreen counterparts? Were there any secret romantic relationships between the group, and guest stars? Were Matt Le Blanc and Mathew Perry friends off-screen? Why isn’t David Schwimmer close to any of his former co-stars? After a bit of digging, I'm here to reveal the true relationships between the stars of Friends.

Let's start with Jennifer Aniston and Courtney Cox's relationship. Mirroring their on-set characters Cox and Aniston were (and still are) close. During the filming period of the show (1994-2004), Cox and Aniston would often rehearse their lines together and have reportedly never been jealous of each other’s success. As time progressed their relationship moved swiftly along with it, Cox was Aniston’s maid of honour at her wedding to Justin Theroux, and Aniston is the proud godmother of Cox’s daughter Coco. During interviews, Aniston has revealed that her acting colleague is very loyal and funny, and Cox said “I just want Jennifer to be the happiest person!”. They’re simply the best of friends and have always supported each other through thick and thin.

Delving into romantic relationships, what was the deal with Matt Le Blanc and Jennifer Aniston? Unfortunately, unlike rumours seem to suggest, they never dated. Although Le Blanc’s father Paul claims that they had a fling during the period of the show alleging that, "He (Le Blanc) even had a relationship with one of the girls...Jen." He went on to detail how, "they would make out in the dressing rooms. He told me about it - it was when she was married to Brad Pitt." This however, seems to be false as Jennifer continues to deny any romantic relationship between the two, before or after her divorce.

Although the pair have quashed rumours about their relationship being more than friendly, Friends fans have discovered that Jennifer has dated two members of her cast (excluding her ex-husband, Brad Pitt, who appeared on the episode ‘The One With The Rumour’). Joshua, the iconic character who appears during the first half of the series played by Tate Donovan, was once romantically involved with Jennifer before acting on the show. Not only had the pair dated way back in 1995, they had also been engaged for a short period of time. Despite the awkwardness between Donovan and Aniston, the cast attempted to make his experience on set comfortable and enjoyable.

Revealing to HuffPost Live a few years back, Tate said “We were broken up and the producers were like 'Hey would you wanna do six episodes on the show?' And I was like 'maybe it would be good to work through this break-up.' In reality though, the experience was not quite as positive and constructive as he had hoped and he admits that "It was horrible. It was so tough, man. I remember just getting back to my dressing room and just weeping."

What about another Jennifer and another side character? Mike Hannigan (Paul Rudd) made us laugh as his romance with Phoebe Buffay (Lisa Kudrow) developed. Despite striking up a spontaneous and immediate friendship (and many growing rumours), it was unambiguous that the two did not date. During the 90’s there were inaccurate reports of Aniston’s love life, but she maintains that Rudd and her were never an item.

Progressing from the drama in Jen’s love life, all of the Friends fans want to know if the iconic characters Joey and Chandler were besties in real life. You'd be glad to know that they are, but with the cast of friends, there’s always a catch. Back when Friends was still running, Perry admits to suffering from addictions, and once even stated he doesn’t remember filming three years of the show. “I was a little out of it at the time,” he said to BBC, “somewhere between seasons 3 and 6.” Although his cast were attempting to help him through those difficult times, Perry didn’t accept their help at the time. Le Blanc told People’s Magazine that “I tried to talk to him. There was no response. It’s such a personal struggle; they need to bottom out on their own”. Fortunately the two have moved past those hard times, and still hang out together whenever they get the chance. Le Blanc even mentioned that “When we meet, I feel like no time has passed. I could not see him for five years, and then put me in a room with him and it would feel like I saw him yesterday.”

Moving on to David Schwimmer and his relationship between the cast. Sources say that David was never really close with his friends' co-stars and that the guys never had the pure connection the ladies had on-set. Ok, so he wasn’t close to either Perry, or Le Blanc, but what about his real life relationship between Jennifer Aniston? There was an unconfirmed rumour that they had been dating in 2005, after Aniston’s divorce from Brad Pitt. A source from Women's Day said that “They had a passionate romance back then, but it didn’t last long”. However, years later Schwimmer and Aniston both claimed that the romance never happened. After the friends reunion episode released, the stars now seem close again and are apparently inseparable. For now anyway...

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