What if “Friends” Were Cast Today?
Ten years ago this month, we said goodbye to some of TV’s most iconic characters: Monica, Rachel, Phoebe, Joey, Ross and Chandler. The “Friends” season finale drew one of television’s biggest single show audiences ever (more than 52 million viewers!) and the show is still a huge hit in syndication. It’s clear: the series is loved by millions of people.
Which begs the question: if the show were cast today, who would land the illustrious roles? We’ve put on our casting director hats and combed through Hollywood’s current crop of 20-something actors and actresses—and here are our choices.
Joey Tribbiani: Zac Efron
He’s the ‘star’ of the group. There needs to be one or two big names attached to get a pilot picked up—and Zac’s our man. He’s traditionally good looking and he just proved his comedy chops in the successful film “Neighbors.” It’ll be tough to top Matt Leblanc but we just know Zac would deliver Joey’s flirty catchphrase “How YOU doin’?” perfectly.
Monica Gellar: Brooklyn Decker
Brooklyn did a guest stint on “The League” (one of the funniest shows on TV) and she was very, very funny. Her recent “Funny or Die” video confirms that she’s got a terrific sense of humor. And anyone following her on Twitter knows she’s got an uber competitive side—just like Monica.
Ross Gellar: Miles Teller
You may not know the name, but if you’ve seen “The Spectacular Now,” “Footloose” or “Divergent,” you definitely know the face. Miles excels at portraying fabulous-yet-flawed characters—and we think he’d do a fantastic present-day interpretation of Ross. Can’t you just see him as a paleontologist?
Phoebe Buffay: Sophie Turner
Sophie plays the frequently unlucky Sansa Stark on the HBO drama “Game of Thrones.” For four seasons, we’ve mostly seen her frown, scowl and cry. So why do we think she’d make a great Phoebe? Just check out her photos on Twitter – girl knows how to have a good time! We like the potential for smart, dark comedy here.
So-Crazy-It-Just-Might-Work Runner Up: Ariana Grande
Rachel Green: Sarah Hyland
We’ve got to be honest: Rachel was the toughest role to cast. But after much research, we’re excited to name Sarah Hyland as our first choice. She’s gorgeous, has great style (and fab hair) and after honing her skills on “Modern Family” you know she can do comedy. Plus, we think she’d have solid chemistry with Miles (Ross.)
Chandler Bing: Michael B Jordan
Perhaps the only thing the original cast lacked was diversity. We love Michael B. Jordan (of “Friday Night Lights,” “Parenthood” and “The Wire” fame) in the role of Chandler. His resume boosts dramatic and comedic roles—and we think he’d nail it as the enigmatic-yet-lovable Chandler Bing.
- Bonus Casting:
- Coffee shop Gunther: Chord Overstreet
- Chandlers’s ex Janice: Zosia Mamet
- Ross’ ex-wife Carol: Selena Gomez
- Phoebe’s husband Mike: Skylar Astin