Thursday 30 June 2022 10:36 AM Friends co-creator Marta Kauffman apologises for lack of black leads in the hit ... trends now

Thursday 30 June 2022 10:36 AM Friends co-creator Marta Kauffman apologises for lack of black leads in the hit ... trends now
Thursday 30 June 2022 10:36 AM Friends co-creator Marta Kauffman apologises for lack of black leads in the hit ... trends now

Thursday 30 June 2022 10:36 AM Friends co-creator Marta Kauffman apologises for lack of black leads in the hit ... trends now

Friends co-creator Marta Kauffman has once again apologized for the lack of black leads on the legendary New York-based sitcom. 

In response to the lack of diversity on the show, Kauffman has pledged $4 million to her alma mater, the Boston area's Brandeis University, to create an endowed professorship in the university's African and African American studies department. 

Kauffman, 65, who co-created the NBC sitcom with David Crane, said she felt 'embarrassed' that Friends featured a predominantly white cast. 

'I've learned a lot in the last 20 years,' Kauffman told the LA Times. 'Admitting and accepting guilt is not easy. It's painful looking at yourself in the mirror.

'I'm embarrassed that I didn't know better 25 years ago.'

While Friends is arguably one of the most successful sitcoms of all time, running for 10 seasons between 1994 and 2004, the show's lack of diversity was always something it was criticized for.

Friends co-creator Marta Kauffman has once again apologized for the lack of black leads on the legendary New York-based sitcom

Friends co-creator Marta Kauffman has once again apologized for the lack of black leads on the legendary New York-based sitcom

Kauffman, 65, who co-created the NBC sitcom with David Crane, said she felt 'embarrassed' that Friends featured a predominantly white cast

Kauffman, 65, who co-created the NBC sitcom with David Crane, said she felt 'embarrassed' that Friends featured a predominantly white cast

It took the show until 2002 to cast Aisha Tyler, the first black actress to become a series regular on the show, playing Dr. Charlie Wheeler, a paleontology professor who ended up dating Ross Geller (David Schwimmer) in season nine. But she only lasted nine episodes. 

Kauffman has said she regrets making the six main characters all white - but is still happy that Jennifer Aniston, Lisa Kudrow, Courteney Cox, David Schwimmer, Matt LeBlanc, and Matthew Perry were all part of the series. 

'I would have been insane not to hire those six actors. What can I say? I wish Lisa was black?' Kauffman told The Hollywood Reporter prior to the airing of the Friends Reunion special. 

But now, Kauffman is pledging $4 million to Brandeis University to promote the study of African American studies. 

The Marta F. Kauffman '78 Professorship in African and African American Studies will support a distinguished scholar with a concentration in the study of the peoples and cultures of Africa and the African diaspora.

The donation will also help the department to recruit more expert scholars and teachers, map long-term academic and research priorities and provide new opportunities for students to engage in interdisciplinary scholarship, the university said. 

'It took me a long time to begin to understand how I internalized systemic racism,' Kauffman told Brandeis. 'I've been working really hard to become an ally, an anti-racist. And this seemed to me to be a way that I could participate in the conversation from a white woman's perspective.'

It took the show until 2002 to cast Aisha Tyler, the first black actress to become a series regular on the show, playing Dr. Charlie Wheeler, a paleontology professor who ended up dating Ross Geller (David Schwimmer) in season nine. But she only lasted nine episodes

It took the show until 2002 to cast Aisha Tyler, the first black actress to become a series regular on the show, playing Dr. Charlie Wheeler, a paleontology professor who ended up dating Ross Geller (David Schwimmer) in season nine. But she only lasted nine episodes

Since the announcement of the donation, Kauffman told the LA Times: 'I've gotten nothing but love. It's been amazing. It surprised me to some extent, because I didn't expect the news to go this wide.

'I've gotten a flood of emails and texts and posts that have been nothing but supportive. I've gotten a lot of 'It's about time.' Not in a mean way. It's just people acknowledging it was

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