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Former Friends writer says cast had “aggressive” script reactions

Former Friends writer says cast had “aggressive” script reactions
Former Friends writer says cast had “aggressive” script reactions

A writer on season seven of Friends claims the cast would purposely botch lines they didn’t like, knowing they would be rewritten.

The One Where the Cast Had No Constructive Criticism and Left a Writer Bitter About Working With Big-Time Celebs. As detailed in her upcoming book (excerpted in Time), “End Credits: How I Broke Up with Hollywood”, writer Patty Lin had more troubles with the Friends gang than Mr. Heckles, saying the core cast’s reactions to scripts were far from friendly.

Lin – who wrote season seven’s “The One with the Engagement Picture” and “The One Where Chandler Doesn’t Like Dogs” – said that when it came to script reactions, the Friends cast “rarely had anything positive to say, and when they brought up problems, they didn’t suggest feasible solutions. Seeing themselves as guardians of their characters, they often argued that they would never do or say such-and-such. That was occasionally helpful, but overall, these sessions had a dire, aggressive quality that lacked all the levity you’d expect from the making of a sitcom.”

Lin also suggested that the minds behind Friends frequently gave into the cast, who were each making $750,000 per episode by the time season seven rolled around. “They all knew how to get a laugh, but if they didn’t like a joke, they seemed to deliberately tank it, knowing we’d rewrite it. Dozens of good jokes would get thrown out just because one of them had mumbled the line through a mouthful of bacon. David [Crane] and Marta [Kauffman] never said, ‘This joke is funny. The actor just needs to sell it.’” Guess no one told Patty life was gonna be this way…

While Patty Lin was only on Friends the seventh season (also serving as story editor), her experiences do show not only the sort of power in numbers the sextet had, but seems meant to pull the curtain back on what really goes behind the scenes. These are the sorts of tales kept far from the reunion special; instead, we got Justin Bieber as Spud-nik.

“End Credits: How I Broke Up with Hollywood”, which also details her time writing for Freaks and Geeks, Breaking Bad and more, hits shelves on August 29th.

Are you surprised by Lin’s stories about the Friends cast or does this seem like expected behavior from veterans? Let us know in the comments section below.

Originally published at https://www.joblo.com/former-friends-writer-says-cast-had-aggressive-script-reactions/