Lisa Kudrow, who is most famous for playing Phoebe Buffay on the hit sitcom Friends, is turning 51 today! A versatile actress, Kudrow has performed in numerous films and TV shows since the Friends finale aired 10 years ago. She currently plays a strong-spirited congresswoman on Scandal, a shady online shrink on Web Therapy, and most recently appeared as a hilariously mean dean on the hit comedy The Neighbors.
To celebrate Lisa Kudrow’s birthday, we present to you five fun facts about the actress:
1. She almost became a biologist!
Before breaking into the entertainment industry, Lisa was deeply involved in the sciences. She received a Bachelor’s degree in Biology from Vassar Colleges and went on to work in scientific research. Kudrow spent the first eight years of her post-college life inside a laboratory, working on cluster headache research. At the same time, she was going into a couple of auditions hoping to land her first acting gig. Kudrow seriously considered a career in science and was actually intending to follow her scientist father’s footsteps before successfully making it into showbiz. Step back Ross! We’ve found the true nerd of the gang!
2. She came up with the tune for “Smelly Cat”
Phoebe’s song, “Smelly Cat,” is perhaps one of the most recognizable running gags of the sitcom. Lisa Kudrow revealed in an interview with Larry King that the writers wrote the lyrics of the song. However, Kudrow was the one who came up with the catchy tune for her character’s most popular jingle.
3. She was already 31 when the Friends pilot aired
Friends was written to portray the lives of twenty-somethings and their romantic and career struggles in New York City. However, Lisa Kudrow was already a bit older when she took on the role of Phoebe. When she signed for the role, Lisa was already 31 years old. She is the oldest main cast member in the series, six years older than the youngest one, Matthew Perry.
4. She underwent nose surgery when she was a teenager
On Friends, Rachel was made fun of for having nose surgery when she was a teenager. In real life, it was Kudrow who underwent rhinoplasty to have the size of her nose reduced. Commenting on the surgery, Lisa told Entertainment Weekly:
”But I’m not even sure I love how that turned out. I think plastic surgery looks weird — like plastic surgery.”
5. She almost didn’t sign up for the final season of Friends
Lisa Kudrow earned $1 million per episode during the final season of Friends, making her the highest paid TV actress alongside Jennifer Aniston and Courteney Cox. This almost didn’t happen. According to the New York Times, Lisa was already expressing her desire to move on from the hit sitcom. Fortunately, she decided to stay, allowing her character to have proper closure.
Happy Birthday Lisa Kudrow! The Inquisitr wishes you all the best!
[Image from Streamy Awards/Flickr and Warner Bros]