'Friends' $1 Million Salary Was "Ridiculous," Says Co-Creator, But Here’s Why They Earned Every Penny
Despite what the cast of Friends led us to believe, it's not cheap to live in New York City. It also wasn't cheap to pay the stars during Season 10 of the hit show. The six main cast-members of Friends each made $22 for the final season, making headlines in a payday that is still discussed to this day. In fact, recently the show's co-creator Marta Kauffman addressed the Friends salary, calling it "ridiculous."
“A million dollars an episode is kinda ridiculous,” she said during a Television Critics Association Summer Press Tour panel. “Let’s be honest, that’s a lot of money.”
In the conversation, she compared the setup of network TV to that of Netflix. Kauffman is the showrunner for the streaming service's Grace and Frankie. She credited Netflix's show structure with keeping salaries lower than that of the Friends cast.
"And it’s only 13 [episodes]. That’s part of it,” Kaufmann said. “When you do 24 episodes for a network, you know, that’s your whole year. You don’t have time to do other stuff. When an actor is doing 13 episodes, they have many, many, many weeks left. They can pursue movies and theater and other stuff. So I think that really helps people not feel like they have to get a car every time they do an episode."
Yes, $1 million dollars an episode is high, but I think in the final season, the cast totally earned it. Here's seven moments from Season 10 that justify the cast making bank.
When Ross Gets A Spray Tan
And reminded us of the perils of automated spray tan machines.
When Joey Writes Monica And Chandler's Adoption Recommendation
Hey, it worked out in the end, right?
When Pheobe Gets Married
And it gave us all the feels.
When Pheobe Changes Her Name
Only Phoebe could make this hilarious.
When Chandler Sees Janice One Last Time
Three words: Oh. My. God.
When Monica And Chandler Are Parents
And they were so cute that it melted our hearts.
When Rachel Got Off The Plane
And reminded us that true love exists.
Images: NBC (screenshot); Giphy (5)