For the fourth year in a row, the ATX Television Festival has made me wish I had enough time to put aside my work and social life and just head to Austin, Texas for a week. With its yearly panels featuring everyone from cast members to creators of every television show one can imagine (in the past, the festival has even reunited the casts of shows like Friday Night Lights, Veronica Mars, Roswell, amongst others), it sounds like a pop culture aficionado's dream — and, of course, this year doesn't seem to be any different. As previously reported, this year's ATX Television Festival has brought together an insanely cool list of panels, including one for the legendary Marta Kauffman — aka, the creator of Friends and the Netflix series Grace and Frankie. Because Kauffman is amazing in every way, she answered quite a few questions — and revealed some mind-blowing trivia facts — about Friends like a champ.
From regaling audiences with stories about how her rabbi was a Ross and Rachel 'shipper (smart guy!) to talking about how Friends could have ended after Season 8, Kauffman was in fine form with her Friends storytelling. Here are just a few tidbits she revealed during the panel, courtesy of Buzzfeed Entertainment on Twitter.
The One With The Rabbi Who Became An Overnight Celebrity
Remember the name Billy Dreskin? He's the guy Monica revealed Rachel had sex with on Mr. Green's bed in the episode, "The One with Two Parts: Part 2," that featured then-E.R. stars George Clooney and Noah Wyle. Turns out, though, that was actually more than just a funny plot point: Billy Dreskin's actually a real guy who's a rabbi, and he received backlash from his congregation when the episode aired.
The One With The Ultimate Ross & Rachel Shipper
Apparently Kauffman's rabbi was so invested in the Ross and Rachel relationship that he used to stop her and ask "When are you going to get them together?"
You and the rest of the world my friend.
Kauffman stated that she later name dropped this Rabbi in the penultimate episode of Friends as well, though it's not clear what the name actually was:
Probably safe to say it's not Billy Dreskin, though?
The One With The Familiar Extras
Casting extras can be difficult, so, during Friends, Kauffman came up with a brilliant solution: "Every single person I ever knew was somewhere as extras... my lawyer, my agent, family members."
The One With Joey
Kauffman revealed to the audience that she had nothing to do with the Friends Joey Tribbiani-centric spinoff, Joey— which sort of makes me wonder if she has a different idea of what Joey is up do post-series finale.
Is his move to Los Angeles still canon?!
The One With The Original End To Friends
Apparently the creative team believed Friends would end in Season 8 — and then again had that same feeling about Season 9.
Thankfully, of course, it didn't — 10 seasons just sounds so much better, doesn't it?
The One With Carol & Susan's Wedding
Television was a different world back in the '90s — which is basically a nicer way of saying that standards were pretty messed up when it came to LGBT representation on television (aka, there was hardly any). Though Friends had a hand in normalizing the portrayal of same-sex couples and weddings on television, it wasn't without its hurdles: Kauffman revealed that NBC put 125 operators to work during the episode that included Carol and Susan's wedding — and one NBC affiliate wouldn't even air the episode.
The One With The Friends Worry
"When we did Friends, we were told, 'No one wants to watch a show about people only in their twenties,'" Kauffman revealed.
Thankfully, however, the show went on. Friends for life!
Images: Warner Bros. Television; Giphy (3)