Last week, fans of the 1990s sitcom Friends were rejoicing after it was announced that the entire cast would reunite for a new NBC special honoring James Burrows, who directed several episodes of the series. The original report revealed that Friends stars Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry and David Schwimmer were all expected to be on hand for the special, which is set to air on Sunday, February 21, but now a new report from US Weekly reveals that Matthew Perry will not be in attendance. Here's what the actor's publicist had to say in a statement issued last week.
"Regarding Matthew Perry and the James Burrows tribute, Matthew will not be attending, as he is in London in rehearsals for his play, The End of Longing, which begins previews on February 2 at the Playhouse Theatre. NBC executives were aware of this prior to their TCA announcement. Matthew may tape something for the tribute. In other words, this is not the reunion people have been hoping for."
Matthew Perry also appeared on the U.K. talk show The Graham Norton Show, where he confirmed he won't be in attendance for the special, but the actor did reveal that he is going to introduce them via video from London. So, while you will technically see all of the main Friends stars on this special, they won't all be in the same room together, or even in the same country together, for that matter. Still, it should be quite the event, honoring one of the most iconic TV directors of all time.
James Burrows recently directed his 1,000th episode of television with the NBC midseason sitcom Crowded. He directed 15 episodes of Friends, including the pilot episode. This NBC special honoring this TV legend, who also co-created the 1980s classic Cheers, is expected to cover all facets of his legendary career The special is being likened to that of the Saturday Night Live 40th Anniversary special that aired last year.
The last time a Friends reunion happened was back in 2014, but it was only Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox and Lisa Kudrow who showed up for a special episode of Jimmy Kimmel Live! marking the 10th anniversary of the series finale. Are you disappointed that Matthew Perry won't be in attendance for this Friends reunion? Will a full Friends reunion ever happen?