Producer says 'never' to 'Friends' reunion movie

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PASADENA, Calif. (AP) — A roundup of news Sunday from the Television Critics Association winter meeting, at which TV networks and streaming services are presenting details on upcoming programs.



Dolly Parton may reunite someday with her "Nine to Five" movie co-stars Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin on the pair's Netflix series "Grace & Frankie," but not yet.

Executive producer Marta Kauffman said it's too early in the life of the Netflix drama, which begins its second season in May.

"The minute you bring Dolly Parton — who I love, by the way — it's 'Nine to Five'" and viewers will be taken out of the world of "Grace & Frankie," Kauffman said.

She took the opportunity to make her feelings known about a reunion for another show she produced.

"I will say there will never be a 'Friends' reunion movie," she said.

The possibility of the "Friends" stars reuniting in some fashion was raised after NBC said it was gathering them for a Feb. 21 tribute to veteran director Jim Burrows, who counts the hit sitcom and many others among his credits.

But it turned out the network is well shy of that goal, with NBC executives saying last week that the majority of "Friends" stars Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry and David Schwimmer will be there and "in one form or another."



Lily Tomlin, 76, asked to share the secret of aging with grace and gusto, answered succinctly.

"Denial," said Tomlin, who co-stars with Jane Fonda in Netflix's "Grace & Frankie."



There's been hand-wringing among television executives about whether there are too many television shows for consumers to keep track of. That's not the case in the trenches.

Comedy producer Judd Apatow, who has a new series "Love" being released on Netflix next month, said a lot of his friends who were out of work five or six years ago now have jobs. Not only that, creators have more of an upper hand, he said.

He called it a "miracle" that there's a profit motive to create innovative television, and that it has raised the game of creative minds.



There's really not much that's sexy about filming sex scenes on "Marvel's Jessica Jones," says star Krysten Ritter. Everything is tightly choreographed.

That said, "if you're going to have to do scenes like that, it's not terrible to do that with Mike," she said of co-star Mike Colter, who plays Luke Cage in the Netflix drama, which just got picked up for a second season.

Colter said he's comfortable filming the scenes with Ritter, less so with the "20 or 30 people around on set who wouldn't normally be on set."



Netflix still won't release any specific details about who is using the streaming service. But Ted Sarandos, Netflix's chief content officer, said there shouldn't be an assumption that older viewers are going to be intimidated by the new way of experiencing television.

"A couple of years ago people said that their parents wouldn't use email," Sarandos said. "Now they're on Facebook, much to their embarrassment sometimes."


Associated Press Television writers David Bauder and Lynn Elber contributed to this report.

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