The Friends reunion special, one of the most high-profile TV casualties of the Covid-19 pandemic, is set to finally start shooting.
Sources have confirmed that HBO Max’s unscripted special will begin taping in Los Angeles next week.
HBO Max declined to comment.
It will feature the gang – Matthew Perry, Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, David Schwimmer and Matt LeBlanc – returning to the comedy’s original soundstage, Stage 24, on the Warner Bros. Studio lot in Burbank.
Ben Winston is set to direct the reunion. The actors will executive produce the reunion with Friends creators Kevin Bright, Marta Kauffman and David Crane exec producing alongside Winston, Aniston, Cox, Kudrow, LeBlanc, Perry and Schwimmer. Emma Conway and James Longman are co-executive producers. The special hails from Warner Bros. Unscripted & Alternative Television and Fulwell 73 Productions.
The show was originally set to be one of the launch specials for HBO Max’s launch last year but shooting was delayed by the pandemic.
Schwimmer recently revealed to BBC talkshow host Graham Norton that while the show is unscripted and they will not necessarily be in character, he teased, that “there is one section of it that I don’t want to give away, but we all read something.”
Set designer Greg Grande also recently teased on Instagram a shot of the classic New York apartment with its recognizable couches.
The special is designed to join all 236 episodes of the Emmy-winning 1994-2004 NBC series, revealed last year by WarnerMedia as the top show on the streaming platform.