Black stars reimagine 'Friends' to get out the vote
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Black stars reimagined a “Friends” episode on Tuesday night in an effort to encourage voter turnout in the upcoming election.

An episode of “Zoom Where It Happens” starred an all-Black cast performing a table read of a “Friends” episode to bring attention to former first lady Michelle ObamaMichelle LeVaughn Robinson ObamaObama to young voters: Create 'a new normal in America' by voting for Biden Obama hits trail to help Biden, protect legacy Michelle Obama shares pro-Biden music video featuring Black Eyed Peas, Jennifer Hudson MORE’s “When We All Vote” campaign. 

The table read starred Ryan Michelle Bathe as Rachel, Sterling K. Brown as Ross, Uzo Aduba as Phoebe, Aisha Hinds as Monica, Jeremy Pope as Chandler and Kendrick Sampson as Joey. Gabrielle Union narrated the episode, which was directed by Salli Richardson-Whitfield and produced by Stephanie Allain. 


The ensemble acted out “The One Where No One’s Ready,” an episode from the show's third season in which Ross is struggling to get all of the friends to leave on time for an event at which he is speaking.

Bathe announced the table read over Instagram with a video showing the original “Friends” cast transforming into the new ensemble. 

Watching the Zoom version of the show was free, but viewers were required to register to receive information from social justice organizations in the future, Essence noted.

Cynthia Erivo started the Zoom with a soul version of the “Friends” theme song, “I’ll Be There for You,” before all of the characters appeared on separate cameras, besides spouses Brown and Bathe, USA Today reported

The actors added a few fun changes to the script, including replacing one of Chandler’s lines to Joey: "In the words of A.A. Milne, 'Get out of my chair, dillhole.'" Instead, Pope said, "In the words of Jordan Peele, 'Get Out!'"   


After the performance, the actors called on viewers to register to vote and plan how they are going to do so. They pointed viewers to Obama’s initiative, founded ahead of the 2018 midterm elections, that focuses on increasing voter turnout.

"This episode is called 'The One Where No One's Ready.' I have not been more ready to vote," Hinds said, according to USA Today. "I will be voting super-duper early. I checked my status today at I'm still registered, so I can't wait."

The “Friends” episode was the second “Zoom Where It Happens” episode. An all-Black cast earlier this month performed a “Golden Girls” episode, which saw more than 100,000 RSVPs. “Zoom Where It Happens” will keep going with a rotating cast of actors through Election Day, CNN reported.