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Friends to come back for 9th & final season!

Old 02-11-02, 09:55 PM
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Friends to come back for 9th & final season!

‘Friends’ to come back for ninth
and final season

Actors to get $1 million
per episode, sources say

By David Bauder
ASSOCIATED PRESS



NEW YORK, Feb. 11 — Television’s most popular show, the NBC comedy “Friends,” is coming back for a ninth and final season. The six actors who star in the show, NBC and Warner Brothers Television signed a deal Monday to wrap up the series with a final, 24-episode season starting in the fall.

JENNIFER ANISTON, Courteney Cox Arguette, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry and David Schwimmer will all be paid $1 million per episode for the final season, according to sources close to the negotiations who spoke on the condition of anonymity.
Their contracts, believed to be worth more than $750,000 per episode now, were due to expire at the end of the season.
It was unexpectedly quick good news for NBC, which had been concerned that negotiations over the series’ return would stretch into May, as it had the last time “Friends” was renewed. May is when networks announce their new fall schedules.
This year, however, the actors — buoyed by the show’s strong ratings and positive critical response this season — decided early they wanted to come back.
“Friends” has drawn an average of 24.5 million viewers this season, more than any other regular series. It has never finished as the No. 1 show for any season in its history, according to Nielsen Media Research.

‘EASIEST DEAL ... EVER MADE’
“We’ve never had better ‘Friends,”’ said NBC Entertainment President Jeff Zucker, “and we’re thrilled.
“Since we all had the same objective, this was the easiest deal we have ever made,” Zucker said. “Everyone wanted it to work out, because everyone wanted to be able to send the series out appropriately, and in style.”
The season is nearing a climax with Aniston’s character, Rachel, pregnant and due to deliver a baby during the May ratings sweeps.
NBC will reportedly pay Warner Brothers a $6 million per episode license fee for the series, up from the current $5.5 million.
Earlier Monday, show representatives denied a tabloid report that writers were working on a final episode that had Rachel dying in childbirth.


This is good news! I hope that they continue to offer good story lines like this season. Chris
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Old 02-11-02, 10:02 PM
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well that's cool. while Friends definately isn't one of my favs on tv, it's decent. I usually laugh a couple of times per episode. I like the Joey character.
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Old 02-11-02, 10:04 PM
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wow.. schwimmer caved. I didn't expect it.
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Old 02-11-02, 10:19 PM
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Originally posted by JohnPhoenix
wow.. schwimmer caved. I didn't expect it.
the word was that Aniston was the hold out. I mean come on. Sure, this stuff isn't exactly shakespeare or anything, but at $22-$24 million a year for a job! How can you pass that up? I mean if all of the "friends" aren't each worth about $30-$50 million, they have some problems. They can all go on to miniscule careers of bit parts after the show is over.
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Old 02-11-02, 10:38 PM
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Yup... during the Olympics they showed a commercial announcing this...

I guess we won't see Rachel die in childbirth!!!!!!!
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Old 02-11-02, 10:42 PM
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David Schwimer must be the luckiest man on earth. $1 Million an episode to whine like a little girl-- he must have sold his soul to the devil.
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Old 02-11-02, 10:56 PM
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Originally posted by Tommy_Harn
David Schwimer must be the luckiest man on earth. $1 Million an episode to whine like a little girl-- he must have sold his soul to the devil.
I'd whine like a little girl for half that.
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Old 02-11-02, 11:13 PM
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It amazes me that they don't just take the money as long as it comes....not like they have anything else to fall back on.

Also glad to see that NBC is "proud to announce that Friends will be coming back for another season." Why just say that they're proud that they get to win another year of ratings wars with tired shows.
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Old 02-11-02, 11:13 PM
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For a million dollars an episode, you would think Matthew Perry would be asked to lay off the twinkies.
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Old 02-11-02, 11:35 PM
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I think you guys are overlooking that they've already made so much money from the show's run that $25 million to them isn't what it would be to us.

And, even so, they came back for $1 million per episode. Seinfeld walked away from, what, $5 million per?

At some point, you do what you want to do because you find it challenging, interesting, or satisfying, and you accept "fair" pay. So Friends will pay a lot, whereas the next indie film Kudrow is in next summer will pay her almost nothing. Much like how Ocean's 11 didn't pay the stars their regular salaries.
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Old 02-11-02, 11:45 PM
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kelsey grammer had the highest contract with 1.2 million. if seinfeld really got 5 it might be partly for his writing/producitng or whatever he did. i dont htink he got 5 million an ep for acting
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Old 02-12-02, 12:41 AM
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I'm glad they're coming back but I'm a bit skeptical about next season since Rachel and Ross will have their baby. I'm curious about how they will handle that.
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Old 02-12-02, 02:33 AM
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Originally posted by Flay
For a million dollars an episode, you would think Matthew Perry would be asked to lay off the twinkies.
So the fact the guy is finally off drugs and sober you can't live with the man gaining a little weight? I doubt if he's really sucking down the twinkies....
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Old 02-12-02, 04:33 AM
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Well, I'm disappointed. I guess I'll have to wait another year for Aniston and LeBlanc to become the serious actors I've often predicted them to be. NBC has bought themselves one more year to try and fix their network before it completely falls apart. They've stretched so many formerly great shows as thin as they can possibly get, and if they don't hurry up and find something to fill the voids they're creating, it's going to get ugly for them, despite what current ratings show. Oh well ... maybe next season of Friends won't be as mediocre and insulting as this year has been so far.

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Old 02-12-02, 05:06 AM
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So the fact the guy is finally off drugs and sober you can't live with the man gaining a little weight? I doubt if he's really sucking down the twinkies....

And I doubt he's sober.
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Old 02-12-02, 08:20 AM
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Good to hear this. The show is not in a spot right now to end. I am glad there will be one more season.
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Old 02-12-02, 09:31 AM
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Schwimmer said he had about $58 million saved up and enough for him to live the rest of his life. He wanted to become a teacher. Not sure about Aniston being hold out, but who knows.

Also, they'd get money for the shows in syndication.... a paycheck for the rest of their lives really.
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Old 02-12-02, 09:35 AM
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This is a no-brainer. It is not like their movie careers have gone anywhere.
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Old 02-12-02, 09:39 AM
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Originally posted by dolphinboy
I'd whine like a little girl for half that.
I'd whine like a little girl to get lunch money.
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Old 02-12-02, 10:07 AM
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Originally posted by dave955
At some point, you do what you want to do because you find it challenging, interesting, or satisfying, and you accept "fair" pay. So Friends will pay a lot, whereas the next indie film Kudrow is in next summer will pay her almost nothing.
Exactly.

While $24 million for a season sounds like a no-brainer, people have to realize that these folks have already made a TON of money. They are set for life and are only in their mid-30s or so.

At some point, you have to look at life and think "what do I *want* to do?" After 8 years of being stuck on a sitcom, I'm sure it must be pretty difficult to go back for another year, even given the large sums of money being waved at them... They are already wealthy and I'm sure most/all of them are looking forward to new roles -- something more challenging than sleepwalking through stale jokes about characters that they've been playing for almost a decade.


(I don't pretend that any of these actors are Lawrence Oliver or anything, but I think they are all relatively talented and can have decent careers away from Friends.)
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Old 02-12-02, 10:25 AM
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I think we should pictch a show to NBC called DVDtalk Friends. I figure I could do that for a million a year.
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Old 02-12-02, 10:53 AM
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I'm glad they're coming back, I'm glad they're making all that money, and I can't wait to see how the producers tie everything up. I must admit though I was hoping to see a character die, just because it's rarely -- if ever -- done.

I would love to see them all be successful in the future, and I'm sure they can't wait to try something new and challenging. I hope Matthew Perry does some good work (I actually liked him in "Lost in Space"), and I hope Schwimmer finds himself ... I think he is clearly a good actor, though his recent scripts beg to differ.
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Old 02-12-02, 01:03 PM
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Originally posted by Toad
I hope Matthew Perry does some good work (I actually liked him in "Lost in Space")...
I agree -- Matthew Perry's work in "Lost in Space" was the best thing about that film...
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Old 02-12-02, 01:12 PM
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Originally posted by adamblast
I agree -- Matthew Perry's work in "Lost in Space" was the best thing about that film...
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Old 02-12-02, 01:34 PM
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Matthew Perry was the best thing in Scream too!
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