As FRIENDS began its journey toward becoming one of the most popular sitcoms of all time, the cast members were still finding their footing in the industry. In a nostalgic trip down memory lane, here are some details about how they spent their first big paychecks.
During an appearance on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno on the day of the series finale, the host was curious to know how the actors had indulged themselves after receiving their initial earnings. The answers varied, showcasing the diverse tastes of the FRIENDS cast.
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Jennifer Aniston, who portrayed the beloved character Rachel Green, stayed true to her character. Famous for her extensive shopping sprees as Rachel, Aniston decided to splurge on a brand new 1969 280 Mercedes. Her choice of a classic car demonstrated her impeccable taste and left Jay Leno so impressed that he even asked her out on the spot.
On the other hand, Courteney Cox, who brought her character Monica Geller to life, had an inkling that FRIENDS would achieve great success. This confidence led her to purchase a Porsche, although she couldn't recall the exact model. Remarkably, she made this extravagant purchase even before the show was picked up for another season, displaying her unwavering belief in the sitcom's future.
"I bought a Porche before we even knew we were picked up. I bought a 911 or 993 or whatever it was. I had it for seven years. But I was overextended. I took a gamble, and it worked."
Following suit, Lisa Kudrow, who played the eccentric Phoebe Buffay, opted for an Acura Legend. Her choice demonstrated her practicality and aligned with her character's quirkiness. However, it was Matt LeBlanc's response that surprised everyone. Though it cannot be tagged as unexpected.
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When asked about his first paycheck, Matt LeBlanc, known for his portrayal of Joey Tribbiani, confessed that he had been completely broke before landing the role. As a result, his first purchase was simply dinner. It's astonishing to think that someone who would go on to achieve such tremendous success once struggled so profoundly.
"I was so broke. I needed the job really bad. And the first thing I bought was dinner."
But why was his choice unsurprising? Well, fans couldn't help but draw parallels between LeBlanc's decision to buy dinner and his character Joey's notorious love for food. And hence the fans claimed that LeBlanc buying food before anything else is 'So Joey of him.'
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Looking back, it's incredible to witness the humble beginnings of the FRIENDS cast and the impact the show had on their lives. Matt LeBlanc's journey from financial hardship to iconic sitcom star is a testament to his talent and perseverance. Lady Luck smiled upon him, and over the course of the show's reign, he earned an estimated $136 million.
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno