9. Matthew Perry & Jennifer Aniston Almost Starred In Other Sitcoms Instead
Matthew Perry and Jennifer Aniston also almost missed out on the show due to their commitments to other TV series.
During Friends' audition process, Perry was already signed on to appear in another sitcom, L.A.X. 2194, revolving around baggage handlers at Los Angeles International Airport 200 years in the future.
Someone at Warner Bros. was present at the taping of L.A.X. 2194's pilot episode and, with an inkling that this bizarre pilot wasn't ever going to make it to season, suggested casting him in Friends regardless. Thankfully L.A.X. 2194 never got picked up, and everything worked out just fine for Perry.
Things were much dicier for Aniston, though, who was already working on multiple episodes of the CBS sitcom Muddling Through.
The bold gamble was made to sign Aniston anyway, effectively sharing her between shows and waiting to see which one became a hit.
Crane added that the first three episodes of Friends were even shot while Muddling Through was still on the air, and if CBS had picked it up for series they would've had to re-shoot those three episodes without Aniston.
Again, everything fell in place in the end, though Aniston herself explained that she initially begged a producer on Muddling Through to release her from the show, only for him to tell her he'd seen the Friends pilot and knew it wouldn't make her a star.
Furthermore, he insisted that Muddling Through was the show that would make her famous. Talk about comments that aged like milk...