Is a ‘Friends’ reunion in the works for HBO Max? THR says maybe

WarnerMedia is in the middle of tough talks for a “Friends” reunion to try to lure eyeballs to its upcoming HBO Max streaming service, The Hollywood Reporter reported.

  • The talks are said to center around an unscripted reunion special that would include Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry and David Schwimmer, as well as show creators David Crane and Marta Kauffman.
  • THR sources say that talks are still in the early stages and will require not only agreements from the cast members and creators but could also run into scheduling challenges.
  • “Friends” is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year and has seen a resurgence in popularity on Netflix, which reportedly paid $80 to $100 million for the streaming rights for 2019.
  • However, Netflix will lose those rights to HBO Max at the end of the year.
  • A reunion special could be a great way to kick off HBO Max when it launches in 2020 while also complementing one of its most popular titles.
  • Warner Bros. Television produced the series for NBC — which, thanks to AT&T’s purchase of Time Warner, makes HBO and “Friends” corporate cousins.
  • Sources says that the cast’s willingness to consider a deal is significant in itself.
  • Most of the cast and many crew members have said they are against doing any scripted reunion.
  • Although the exact content of the show is far from being clear, being unscripted likely would mean it would be more of a retrospective with the cast and crew discussing the show and its history.
  • This also likely means they would appear as themselves and not their characters.
  • The special would presumably also avoid any kind of improvised plot line following the “Friends” characters since many of those involved appear to want to avoid messing with the storyline or “Friends” universe.
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