Uzo Aduba, Ryan Bathe, Aisha Hinds, Sterling K. Brown, Kendrick Sampson, and Jeremy Pope will re-enact a Friends episode from season 3.
Gabrielle Union is hosting a live table read of an episode of the beloved sitcom, Friends with an all-black cast. It will be featuring Uzo Aduba, Ryan Bathe, Aisha Hinds, Sterling K. Brown, Kendrick Sampson, and Jeremy Pope.
The actors will be recreating the epic episode from season 3, ‘The One Where No One’s Ready’ on Tuesday evening. The Friends cast originally includes Jennifer Aniston, David Schwimmer, Courtney Cox, Matthew Perry, Lisa Kudrow, and Matt LeBlanc.
In the all-black version of the live table read, Aduba will play Phoebe, Bathe will play Rachel, Hinds will portray Monica, Brown will appear as Ross, Sampson will take on Joey, and Pope will be Chandler.
The production includes Bathe, Hinds, Cynthia Erivo, Tessa Thompson, Kerry Washington, Rashida Jones, Stefanie, and Quentin James; Channing Dungey, Karen Richardson, Issa Rae, Latanya Richardson, and Ava DuVernay.
The event will be a part of ‘Zoom Where It Happens‘. It is a live table read series for Black women artists, whose aim is to boost activation, awareness, and intention about the right to vote. The table read launched earlier this month on September 8. It will continue to have a variety of actors through Election Day on November 3, 2020.
The aim of the live table read is to catalyze voters and increase the fight for electoral justice and voting rights. The hit sitcom, Friends has been reimagined several times previously. Jay-Z had replaced the original cast with an all-black cast, back in 2017. The reenactment included Insecure‘s Issa Rae and Atlanta’s Lakeith Stanfield.
Marta Addresses Lack Of Diversity On Friends
The artist had reenacted the iconic sitcom for his music video “Moonlight“. He also had chosen the episode of ‘The One Where No One’s Ready’. The sitcom aired for 10 seasons from 1994-2004. It received a lot of backlash in recent times for its lack of representation. Aisha Tyler was the first Black artist to have a major role in the series in season 9 and 10.
In season 7, Gabrielle was also a part of the episode called, “The One with the Cheap Wedding Dress.” Co-creator of the show, Marta Kauffman addressed the lack of representation in June. She got emotional in a virtual 2020 ATX TV festival when she was asked what she wished to know when she started out.
Marta, who created the series with David Crane, said she wishes she knew what she knows today. She said tearfully, “Sorry, I just wish I knew then what I know now. I would’ve made very different decisions.” The creator said their company always encouraged people of diversity but she did not do enough.
Marta said, “I mean we’ve always encouraged people of diversity in our company, but I didn’t do enough and now all I can think about is what can I do? What can I do differently? How can I run my show in a new way? And that’s something I not only wish I knew when I started slow running, but I wish I knew all the way up through last year.”
David revealed earlier that he had pushed for more diversity on the show. He said he was well aware of the lack of diversity and he always pushed his character to be dating women of color. The actor said, “One of the first girlfriends I had on the show was an Asian American woman; and later I dated African American women. That was a very conscious push on my part.”
David’s character Ross dated Julie, played by Lauren Tom, in season 2 and then dated Charlie, played by Aisha. The actor said he would like a reimagined version of his sitcom with a more diverse cast. He said, “Maybe there should be an all-black Friends or an all-Asian Friends.”
To register for the free virtual table read on September 22, visit here.