11 Actors, You Didn’t Know Were Nearly Cast In Friends

As Mark Darcy from Bridget Jones would say, you like Friends just the way it is. Despite some of the inconsistencies, plot holes and storylines that keep you up at night, it’s perfect just as it is – and you’d be horrified to see anything change.

But it wasn’t always meant to be the way it turned out: actually, at the very beginning, Friends  creators David Crane and Marta Kauffman wanted to cast different actors as Ross Geller, Rachel Green, Monica Geller, Chandler Bing, Phoebe Buffay and Joey Tribbiani. Here’s the most famous 11.

1. Eric McCormack – Ross Geller

“I needed to start pulling at this other sort of funnier, lighter side. So I auditioned for everything,” he told Huff Post. “I auditioned for Friends even. I auditioned for Schwimmer’s part.

“Years later, I told Jimmy Burrows, who directed all of Will & Grace and Friends too [that] I was up for Schwimmer’s part. He said, ‘Oh, honey, you’re wasting your time. They wrote the part for him.’”

2. Nancy McKeon – Monica Geller

“Nancy McKeon also read for Courteney’s part. She gave a terrific performance,” Lori Openden, head of casting for NBC at the time,  said. “Warren [Littlefield, the then NBC president] let Marta [Kauffman] and David [Crane] make the call. They went off for a walk and came back and said Courteney.”

3. Jane Krakowski – Rachel Green

She revealed, “Well, I, like almost every actor in the world, auditioned for Friends. I wish I had gotten that one. I actually auditioned for Rachel, and I didn’t go very far.”

4. Jon Cryer – Chandler Bing