During the Friends reunion special, the former costars opened up about having their first kiss onscreen.

By Maureen Lee Lenker
May 27, 2021 at 08:00 AM EDT

Warning: This article contains spoilers for Friends: The Reunion.

Ross and Rachel will always reign as an iconic pop culture couple — but what about their real-life counterparts, David Schwimmer and Jennifer Aniston?

It turns out they were a bit of star-crossed lovers, or at least star-crossed crushes, while filming the first season of Friends. When asked on Friends: The Reunion by host James Corden if there was any off-screen hanky-panky between the core six castmates, Aniston and Schwimmer admitted their old feelings.

"The first season I had a major crush on Jen," Schwimmer revealed, before Aniston added, "It was reciprocated." (Is that her version of "I got off the plane?")

Jennifer Aniston and David Schwimmer
Credit: Ron Galella/getty

Schwimmer added, "At some point we were both crushing hard on each other, but it was like two ships passing because one of us was always in a relationship and we never crossed that boundary. We respected that."

Aniston recalled all the build-up to their first kiss on television, the memorable moment under the Central Perk door frame in the rain. "I just remember saying one time to David, 'It's going to be such a bummer if the first time you and I actually kiss is going to be on national television,'" she quipped. "Sure enough, first time we kissed was in that coffee shop. So, we just channeled all of our love and adoration for each other into Ross and Rachel."

Though their feelings might have never been acted on, costar Courteney Cox said it was evident in their onscreen chemistry. "That scene in the coffee house, their first kiss, I was watching it the other day and I was weeping at the end of it," she said. "The tension, it was just palpable, it was just perfect."

In retrospect, Schwimmer is amazed the entire cast and crew didn't pick up on it. "I thought back on the very first year or two, when we had breaks from rehearsal, there were moments where we would cuddle on the couch," he reflected. "And I'm thinking how did not everyone know we were crushing on each other?!"

To which Matt LeBlanc retorted, "We knew for sure."

But as Cox pointed out, it was probably wise allowing their offscreen friendship to feed their chemistry and not potentially complicate things if they dated and things ended poorly.

After all, the Friends set certainly didn't need a "we were on a break" moment.

Friends: The Reunion is now available on HBO Max.

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