Here's what happened to all the minor Friends characters you forgot all about
More than 24 years after it first hit screens, Friends is still regularly referred to as the greatest comedy show of all time. What made it so great? Perhaps it was the fabulous main cast, maybe it was incredible writing or there's a strong potential it was the forever relatable storylines that still speak to anyone struggling through their 20s. The options are endless, but there's one thing that is certainly a standout factor: the phenomenal supporting cast.
The show, which originally aired on NBC in 1994, wouldn't be the same without Gunther, Estelle, Mr Heckles, the Ugly Naked Guy and all of the other fantastic actors who brought the minor characters to life. But there's one problem: we know where Rachel, Ross, Monica, Chandler, Phoebe and Joey are nowadays, but what about the rest of the Friends squad? We did a little digging and it's enough to make you do a Janice and scream "oh my God!"
Ugly Naked Guy
Who actually is Ugly Naked Guy? For years, Friends fans had absolutely no clue about the answer to this question. Although he was talked about many times, Rachel and Monica's neighbour was only seen on camera twice - and the first time we saw his stomach and the second time we saw the back of his head, so what we did see was never that helpful when it came to identifying him. Luckily, HuffPost writer Todd Van Luling dedicated a year of his life to the cause and discovered that Manhattan Beach resident Jon Haugen was the culprit all along. Jon, who described being on Friends as "the best time in my life", has had a number of small acting roles ever since, and appeared on ABC’s Uncle Buck and on the Warner Bros pilot Training Day, as well as making appearances on My Name is Earl and Desperate Housewives.
Larry Hankin was the man who played the girls' grouchy elderly neighbour and you'll be happy to hear that he's still acting at the grand age of 77. Hankin appeared on several TV shows after Friends, including CSI: Crime Scene Investigation and Breaking Bad, and more recently has hit screens in Wally Got Wasted and The Homeless Detective. In addition, the HuffPost reports that his YouTube Channel showcases a mini web series, the primary focus being on a character named Emmett Deemus, an aging, homeless biker who gives off serious Don Quixote vibes. However, he'll always be bashing the ceiling of his flat with a broom in our hearts.
Out of all of the minor Friends characters to exist, Marcel is probably the one who's killing it the most post-show. Ross's white-headed capuchin monkey, which is actually a girl called Katie in real life, is a true star, having appeared in 30 Rock, George of the Jungle, Flintstones II: Viva Rock Vegas, Outbreak, Addicted To Love and Instinct. In addition, she went on to become the Rally Monkey for the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim baseball team and, yes, that is her you see next to Kendall Jenner in a Mario Testino photo shoot for Allure Magazine. Not bad, eh?
Ever since Friends finished in 2004, our favourite chain-smoking agent has been busy onstage. June Gable, who played Estelle Leonard for ten years, returned to work as a stage actress after ending her role, appearing in plays like This Day Forward. In addition, the 72-year-old actress had a role in the TV adaption of musical Nunsense, which follows the zany antics of the world's most famous nuns as they enter "Hoboken Has Talent," a local variety show competition.
Sometimes referred to as the "secret seventh friend", James Michael Tyler was the actor who played a man with "hair brighter than the sun". While often confined to the background of scenes, Gunther has taken centre stage ever since Friends finished and has travelled the world making appearances and opening replica Central Perks. In addition, he has continued acting with minor roles on sitcoms such as Scrubs and Anger Management. 55-year-old Tyler also has starred in a web series called Keeping Up with the Downs and has kept himself busy writing rock music. You'll also be happy to hear that he's stopped bleaching his hair bright blonde after ten years of dying it.
Many fans were gobsmacked in 2016 when 56-year-old Maggie Wheeler, who played Janice, appeared on a talk show to discuss her time on Friends, revealing that the trademark nasal and obnoxiously loud voice wasn't actually the one she spoke with in real life. Life post-Friends for Wheeler hasn't been bad at all, with her clinching roles in Dr. Dolittle 3, How I Met Your Mother, Californication, Hot in Cleveland, ER and Drake and Josh.
Emily Waltham had a rough time on Friends, with her fiancé Ross saying the wrong name at the altar and getting a quickie divorce soon after. However, in real life Helen Baxendale thrived after Friends, maintaining a successful career in British TV with her starring in shows like Kidnap and Ranson, Adrian Mole: The Cappuccino Years and Cuckoo. However, 47-year-old Helen's greatest concern these days in her family; the actress, who could have become an international movie star if she'd stayed in the USA has stated that she has no regrets, and is more than happy living in south-west London with her husband, film director David Williams and their three children.
Being one half of the first lesbian couple ever to get married on TV was the thing that made Jane Sibbett famous. But since ending her time playing Ross's ex-wife Carol, Sibbett has continued to do wonderful things, becoming a theatre director in Hawaii, with sold-out shows of One Billion Rising and Eve Ensler's play The Vagina Monologues at The Kahilu Theatre on Hawaii Island. Nowadays the 55-year-old actress also runs Jane's Dancing Hands, an organisation that focuses on spiritual healing and happiness.
If you're a fan of hit TV show Breaking Bad, you might recognise one character as being the women who pulled Carol away from Ross when she was pregnant with his baby. Actress Jessica Hecht, who played Susan, went on to star as Gretchen alongside Bryan Cranston. 52-year-old Hecht, who is married to film director Adam Bernstein, has also made appearances in Red Oaks, Jessica Jones and Falling Water.
Back in the day, Eddie Cahill played Rachel's cute assistant who was hired simply for his good looks. Nowadays, he looks just as good and has gone on to have a successful acting career, starring as Detective Don Flack in CSI: NY and District Attorney Conner Wallace in the ABC series Conviction. Now quite the silver fox, 40-year-old Cahill - who has claimed that he keeps in contact with David Schwimmer - has admitted that the role he still gets most recognised for is Tag.
Alexandra Holden was just 23 years old when she guest starred as Ross's younger girlfriend on Friends in 2000 - but, time flies, because our girl is all grown up now! Now 40 years old. Holden is still getting the odd TV acting role, having appeared on NCIS: Los Angeles and CSI. The actress, who is divorced from Johnny Strong, also stars in her own Youtube series Out of Luck.
Fans loved it whenever the glamorous Nora Bing showed up to embarrass the hell out of Chandler. But where did she end up? 68-year-old Morgan Fairchild is an actress in her own right aside from Friends and had already made a name for herself before the show, appearing on primetime soap opera Dallas and NBC series Flamingo Road. After Friends ended, she continued to work as an actress, guest starring in Bones, Revenge and Hot in Cleveland, as well as maintaining a strong role within the Screen Actors Guild.
Fan-favourite Elliot Gould was the man to play Ross and Monica's father from 1994-2004. The 79-year-old actor, who was formerly married to Barbara Streisand, began acting in Hollywood films in the 1960s and was perhaps best known for his leading role in M*A*S*H. However, after Friends, Gould - who was rumoured to have drug and gambling problems - settled into playing more supporting roles. These included smaller roles in Night Visitor, Law & Order, the Ocean's Trilogy and Ray Donovan.
Much like her onscreen husband, Christina Pickles was a famous actress in her own right before Friends, with starring roles on daytime soap opera Guiding Light and NBC medical drama St. Elsewhere. After Friends she too took on several supporting roles, appearing in How I Met Your Mother and guest starring on The Division and Children's Hospital. In 2005, she was married to her second husband Australian journalist Ian Masters.
It's good to catch up with the old gang and hear all about what they're up to nowadays. Although it's been 24 years since Friends hit our screens, it will always be the TV show with the greatest supporting (and main) cast ever.