Friends reunion special for HBO Max likely to film by the end of this Summer

Last Updated on August 5, 2021

Friends, reunion, coronavirus

After being delayed indefinitely on account of the coronavirus-induced shutdown, it's been announced that filming for the FRIENDS reunion special will potentially take place by the end of the summer. Word of the rescheduled shoot hails from WarnerMedia Entertainment and Direct-to-Consumer chairman Bob Greenblatt, who announced the reunion's new plan during the NAB Show Executive Leadership Summit.

“At first we thought, shows will be delayed for a month or two at the most, and now it seems like it’s going to be far longer than that,” Greenblatt told Variety‘s Cynthia Littleton on Monday. “We’re holding out for being able to get this special done hopefully by the end of the summer, if the stars align and hopefully we can get back into production. We do think there’s a value to having a big, raucous live audience to experience these six great friends coming back together and we didn’t want to just suddenly do it on a web call with, you know, six squares and people shooting from their kitchens and bedrooms.”

While plans are to tentatively shoot the reunion special in person this summer, with all the original actors present and accounted for, Greenblatt did say that if the current stay-at-home conditions continue indefinitely, that the reunion “may go more to a virtual route, if it is delayed too long.”

“But at the moment, we’re trying to look to the future and get this thing done in a more conventional way, and I think it’s worth waiting for,” Greenblatt said. “We would have loved to have had it on [HBO Max on] Day One, but at the same time, if we can get it launched in the fall, I think it’ll be something that we can have the audience really looking forward to as well.”

The FRIENDS reunion special will find original cast members Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry and David Schwimmer reuniting for the unscripted event. Originally, the plan was to shoot the reunion on Stage 24, the original Friends sound stage. However, seeing as Hollywood is still having to navigate the coronavirus crisis, it's to be understood that plans could change. Thankfully, online reunion specials and events are all the rage right now. Just ask the cast of PARKS AND RECREATION, who recently gathered for a much anticipated reunion that saw the gang raising over $3 million for charity. While the dream is obviously to gather the Friends gang in a tangible, physical space, it's entirely possible that a virtual taping could work just as well.

However the FRIENDS reunion special shakes out, I'm positive that fans of the series will arrive in droves to find out how the characters are getting along in modern times. Keep those fingers crossed, folks.

Source: Variety

About the Author

Born and raised in New York, then immigrated to Canada, Steve Seigh has been a editor, columnist, and critic since 2012. He started with Ink & Pixel, a column celebrating the magic and evolution of animation, before launching the companion YouTube series Animation Movies Revisited. He's also the host of the Talking Comics Podcast, a personality-driven audio show focusing on comic books, film, music, and more. You'll rarely catch him without headphones on his head and pancakes on his breath.