Marta Kauffman, director of the superhit series ‘Friends’, recently sat down for an interview, where she admitted that the pronoun used for Chandler’s (Matthew Perry) transgender parent, played by Kathleen Turner, was wrong.
Kauffman is an American television writer and producer. She is best known as the co-creator of the NBC sitcom ‘Friends‘ with her longtime friend, David Crane. Both of them were also executive producers of the show, along with Kevin Bright. But, even die-hard fans of the show must agree that they went wrong in some places and representation was a huge issue.
‘Friends’ Director Reflects On Faults Of The Show
“We kept referring to her as Chandler’s father, even though Chandler’s father was trans,” Marta Kauffman said during BBC World Service’s ‘The Conversation‘ series. She referenced the character of Amanda Bing, who was portrayed by Oscar-nominated actress Kathleen Turner, on the show — including the episode titled “The One with Chandler’s Dad” — back in 2001.
She added, “Pronouns were not yet something that I understood. So we didn’t refer to that character as she. That was a mistake.”
Sharing her evolved understanding now, she exclaimed- “ I once fired a guy on the spot for making a joke about a trans cameraperson, stressing that incidents of discrimination, just can’t happen.”
Kathleen Turner Feels That ‘Friends’ Didn’t Age Well
“I don’t think it’s aged well. It was a 30-minute sitcom. It became a phenomenon, but no one ever took it seriously as a social comment,” Kathleen Turner said to Gay Times in 2018. Recalling the experience, the actress added why she accepted the role and what she thinks of it now. “It was just dressing up, instead of accepting her identity as legitimate. How they approached me with it, ‘would you like to be the first woman playing a man playing a woman?’ I said yes because there weren’t many drag/trans people on television at the time.”