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Friends Star Lisa Kudrow Explains How Phoebe’s Twin Came to Be



lisa kudrow ursula

Cross-over characters are hardly anything new to television. Think Maude housekeeper Florida Evans leaving the show to clean her own house on Good Times as Florida Evans, for example. But before actress Lisa Kudrow starred in the hit sitcom Friends as Phoebe Buffay, she had a recurring role on Mad About You as a ditzy waitress named Ursula Buffay. Being that Kudrow was a not regular cast member on Mad About You

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, meant freed up time for auditions, and she eventually landed the role of Phoebe on Friends.

Since the two shows held back-to-back time slots, Friends needed to address “this other Buffay” female on their show. Kudrow reveals Ursula’s Friends appearance boiled down to a scheduling quirk. During an interview on the Podcrushed podcast, Kudrow explained (via Screen Rant):

RELATED: Lisa Kudrow Supports a Friends Reboot

As many can recall, Phoebe’s father, Frank, abandoned her as a child. The woman she believed was her mother, who died by suicide, lied to her, and it was later revealed that Phoebe’s birth mother had given her up for adoption. Phoebe has a half-brother, Frank, who she adores. But it is when Kudrow pulls double-duty as Phoebe and her “evil” twin sister, Usula, where audiences got some of the most belly laughs. Not only did Phoebe usually end up cleaning Ursula’s messes, but their episodes also delivered quite a few memorable storylines.