Friends star David Schwimmer suggests reboot be 'all-black or all-Asian'

  • 28/01/2020
David Schwimmer as Ross in Friends.
David Schwimmer as Ross in Friends. Photo credit: NBC

Friends should be rebooted with a cast that's all-black or all-Asian, David Schwimmer has suggested.

The actor, who became famous playing Ross in the hit US sitcom, spoke out about the show's depiction of race in an interview with The Guardian.

"Maybe there should be an all-black Friends or an all-Asian Friends," he said.

"But I was well aware of the lack of diversity and I campaigned for years to have Ross date women of colour. 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."

Schwimmer added he was "very aware" of his privilege as a heterosexual white male and that he was "glad" the series acknowledged his character being Jewish.

Friends ran for 10 seasons and won dozens of awards before going on to be heralded as one of the greatest television shows ever made by the likes of TV Guide and Empire.

While still popular today, in recent times social media users have criticised the show for its all-white cast and "problematic" storylines about issues such as LGBTQ characters and obesity.

But Schwimmer told The Guardian he doesn't care.

"I feel that a lot of the problem today in so many areas is that so little is taken in context," he said.

He insisted Friends was "groundbreaking in its time" in how it depicted sex and relationships. 

"I'm the first person to say that maybe something was inappropriate or insensitive, but I feel like my barometer was pretty good at that time. I was already really attuned to social issues and issues of equality."

In 2019, a photo of the Friends cast together heightened rumours a reunion special or reboot was on the cards.

However, none has been officially confirmed and Schwimmer said the only way he'd want to revisit Ross is in a one-off chat show.

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