8:00am PT by Hilary Lewis
'Friends' Anniversary Celebration Highlights Tribeca TV Festival Lineup
The third annual Tribeca TV Festival is featuring an event that's not that common, doesn't happen every year and is a big deal.
Specifically, the small-screen celebration is getting in on the Friends 25th anniversary fun with a screening of two memorable episodes and a conversation about the iconic, still popular series' legacy with executive producers Kevin Bright, David Crane and Marta Kauffman.
The episodes, shown in 4K digital restoration for the first time, and selected by the show's creators and executive producers, will be "The One With the Embryos" [in which Monica (Courteney Cox), Rachel (Jennifer Aniston), Chandler (Matthew Perry) and Joey (Matt LeBlanc) compete in a trivia game that ends with the men and women switching apartments] and "The One Where Everybody Finds Out" [in which Chandler and Monica's secret romance is finally revealed to the last two friends not in the loop: Phoebe (Lisa Kudrow) and Ross (David Schwimmer), as Phoebe and Rachel have some fun with Chandler].
Those screenings will kick off a nationwide celebration of Friends' 25th anniversary — the series premiered to more than 20 million viewers Sept. 22, 1994 — with a theatrical release of producer-curated episodes throughout the United States.
The Tribeca TV Festival, set to run Sept. 12-15 at New York's Regal Battery Park theater, will also feature a screening of Transparent's musical series finale event, "Musicale Finale," followed by a conversation with executive producers Jill and Faith Soloway and members of the Amazon series' cast, and the world premiere of The CW's Lucy Hale-starring Riverdale spinoff Katy Keene, followed by a conversation with executive producer Michael Grassi and castmembers Lucy Hale, Julia Chan, Jonny Beauchamp, Katherine LaNasa, Zane Holtz, Camille Hyde, Ashleigh Murray and Lucien Laviscount.
The small-screen-focused weekend will also offer looks at two high-profile remakes: an exclusive sneak preview of Freeform's Party of Five reimagining, in which five kids are left on their own after their parents are suddenly deported to Mexico — in celebration of National Hispanic Heritage Month — followed by a conversation with executive producer and writer Amy Lippman, co-executive producer and writer Michal Zebede and castmembers Brandon Larracuente, Niko Guardado, Emily Tosta and Elle Paris Legaspi; and BET+'s take on First Wives Club, followed by a conversation with creator and executive producer Tracy Oliver and star Michelle Buteau.
The festival will also include series premiere screenings and conversations with the cast and crew of Hulu's John Green adaptation Looking for Alaska; CBS' Evil, from The Good Wife and Good Fight team Robert and Michelle King; Starz's true-crime docuseries Leavenworth, executive produced by Steven Soderbergh; Epix's Forest Whitaker starrer Godfather of Harlem; AMC’s docuseries Hip Hop: The Songs That Shook America; the season three premiere of HBO’s Room 104; the season two premiere of ABC’s Bless This Mess, starring Lake Bell and Dax Shephard; and the season three premiere of Amazon’s Billy Bob Thornton series Goliath.
And there will be talks with Hasan Minhaj and James Spader.
“We’re returning this year with a lineup that highlights the ever-changing ways audiences consume television. Featuring selections from classic cable networks, to premium cable, to streaming entertainment, the Festival will always highlight the best storytelling in the medium,” Tribeca Enterprises executive vp Paula Weinstein said in a statement.
Tribeca's festival director Cara Cusumano added, “This year’s Tribeca TV Festival program, like TV itself, has something for everyone. We are bringing channel surfing to the big screen, as our audiences can experience — in just 4 days — the full spectrum of episodic storytelling; and we hope, discover their new favorite show along the way."
Click here for more information about the lineup for the 2019 Tribeca TV Festival, an extension of the Tribeca Film Festival's TV programming.