Jennifer Aniston has been in comedies for almost 30 years, from the start of NBC’s “Friends” in 1994 to the upcoming release of her latest Netflix movie, “Murder Mystery 2.” This means she has seen how comedy tastes have changed over the past three decades.
Recently, Aniston told AFP (via Yahoo News) that “comedy has changed” so much that it’s harder to be funny now.
“Now it’s a little tricky because you have to be very careful, which makes it hard for comedians because the best thing about comedy is that we make fun of ourselves and life,” Aniston said.
“In the past, it was funny to make jokes about people who were prejudiced. And the point was to teach people how stupid they were. We used to be able to do that, but now we can’t.”
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Aniston also said, “There’s a whole generation of kids who now watch old episodes of ‘Friends’ and find them offensive.” “There were things we didn’t mean to do, and there were other things we should have thought about more, but I don’t think we were as sensitive as we are now.”
In the end, Aniston said, “Everyone needs funny! Everyone needs to laugh! We can’t be too hard on ourselves. The United States in particular. Everyone is too far apart.”
In recent years, “Friends” has been criticized for its lack of diversity. Lisa Kudrow, who was in the show, once made headlines when she said that if the show came back or was restarted, “it would not be an all-white cast.”
Kudrow explained the lack of diversity on the show to The Daily Beast last year by saying that the show’s creators, David Crane and Marta Kauffman, “had no business” writing about people of color given their own backgrounds.
“Well, it seems to me like it was made by two Brandeis graduates who wrote about their lives after college,” Kudrow said. “And especially for shows that are character-driven comedies, you write what you know.
They have no right to write about what it’s like to be a person of color. “All six main characters on “Friends” were white, and actors of color rarely had major roles in the show’s 10 seasons and 236 episodes.
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Lauren Tom, Gabrielle Union, Mark Consuelos, and Craig Robinson all had small roles on the show, while Aisha Tyler, who was the most well-known actor of color on the show, only had the lead role in nine episodes.
Kauffman said last July that she was “embarrassed” by the lack of diversity on “Friends” and felt “guilty” about it, so she gave $4 million to Brandeis University to start the Marta F. Kauffman ’78 Professorship in African and African American Studies.
The program will give money to a well-known scholar who studies the people and cultures of Africa and the African diaspora.
“Murder Mystery 2,” which stars Aniston and Adam Sandler, comes out on Netflix on March 31.