A former “Friends” actress who briefly played the girlfriend of Ross Geller (David Schwimmer) recently revealed how fans rooting for Ross and Rachel Green (Jennifer Aniston) to be together reacted to her character as the sitcom was filmed live.
Lauren Tom, 57, played the character “Julie” in Season 2. Julie, like Ross, worked as a paleontologist. Julie and Ross began dating just as Rachel was readying herself to tell Ross how she really felt about him.
“The fans were rabid,” she told the "Today" show, which interviewed 10 former “Friends” actors in light of the show’s 25th anniversary.
“I wasn't prepared for the amount of venom I was about to receive in a live audience where they actually booed my character,” she said. “And, of course, I was trying very hard not to get my feelings hurt. So I had to get used to that.”
That said, Tom revealed that she could relate to the backlash to some degree.
“But I did understand intellectually that, you know, the audience was meant to be rooting for Rachel. Even I was rooting for Rachel, on some level, 'cause I was a fan of the show.”
Tom added: “But emotionally my body didn’t understand that when I heard the booing. So that was tough.”
But Tom said she had a different experience while interacting with the show’s cast, which, aside from Aniston and Schwimmer, also included Courteney Cox, Matthew Perry, Matt LeBlanc and Lisa Kudrow.
“The rest of the cast was so welcoming to me,” she said, adding their friendship “was very authentic” and noted the six of them “were very bonded.”
As fans know, the on-again, off-again couple in the hit ‘90s sitcom end up together by the show’s final episode. (Rachel got off the plane!)
In a recent interview, when asked if Ross and Rachel would still be together today, Aniston had a candid response.
“Yes, absolutely,” she said.