The creator of Friends has blasted the cast’s $1 million-an-episode contracts as ”ridiculous”.
The six stars of the popular sitcom – Lisa Kudrow, Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Matthew Perry, Matt LeBlanc and David Schwimmer – famously negotiated the huge pay deal for the later series of the show, but Marta Kauffman thinks the figure is ”unrealistic.”
Marta – who is now working with Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin on Grace and Frankie – said on a panel at the TCA Summer Press Tour: ”A million dollars an episode is kinda ridiculous. Let’s be honest, that’s a lot of money. There’s something unrealistic about it. Not everybody is going to get a million dollars an episode. So I think actually what we’re all doing [now] is actually more reasonable and makes more sense.”
Marta believes the current climate is very different, so salaries aren’t as high.
She said: ”It’s such a different situation, because ratings are connected to advertisers. That was a case where the cast knew how valuable the show was to the network in terms of the advertisers. There are no advertisers on Netflix… When an actor is doing 13 episodes, they have many weeks left that they can pursue movies and theatre and other stuff. So I think that really helps people not feel like they have to get a car every time they do an episode.”
Matt recently insisted it didn’t matter whether or not he and his co-stars were ”worth” the staggering sum, but they would have been ”stupid” not to negotiate the terms of their contracts.
He said: ”Were we worth $1 million? To me, that’s such a strange question. It’s like, well, that’s irrelevant. Are you worth it? How do you put a price on how funny something is? We were in a position to get it. If you’re in a position in any job, no matter what the job is–if you’re driving a milk truck or installing TVs or an upholsterer for a couch — if you’re in a position to get a raise and you don’t get it, you’re stupid. You know what I mean? We were in a position and we were able to pull it off. ‘Worth it’ has nothing to do with it.”