Friends star Lisa Kudrow has explained why she was fired from Frasier before landing her breakout role of Phoebe Buffay.
The actress was cast as radio producer Roz Doyle in Frasier before the show began in 1993, but she was let go three days into filming the pilot episode.
Kudrow appeared on The Howard Stern Show alongside Friends co-stars Jennifer Aniston and Courteney Cox where she discussed her brief stint, explaining how Frasier director James Burrows believed she wasn’t a good fit.
Asked why she got fired: “I wasn’t right for the part, for the chemistry of the group. That wasn’t working. But I did think, ‘Oh, I am not this guy’s [Burrows] cup of tea.’”
Kudrow explained how she was the only one from the Friends main cast who had to audition for Burrows before landing the role of Phoebe, something she only discovered “very recently”.
“I had to audition just for James Burrows,” she added. “I did it and he went, ‘No notes’. I left going, ‘Well that either means she’s beyond help and hopeless just like I always knew, or it’s perfect and I have no notes.’”
The rejection from Frasier didn’t deter Kudrow at the time, who believed she “wasn’t right” for the show and that Burrows made the right call.
Along with directing many episodes of Frasier, Burrows helmed 15 episodes of Friends in total, including the show’s pilot ‘The One Where Monica Gets A Roommate’. Kudrow was replaced by Peri Gilpin on Frasier as Roz Doyle.