After reuniting with her friends, Emmy winner Lisa Kudrow heads up the cast of a new animated comedy
As you might recall, Lisa Kudrow spent 1994 to 2004 on one of the most iconic, acclaimed, enduring sitcoms ever made. That would be NBC’s Friends, on which she played bubbly bohemian Phoebe for all 10 seasons, scoring an Emmy in 1998. Since then, you’ve seen her headlining TV comedies like HBO’s cult hit The Comeback and online series Web Therapy; guest-starring on Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Scandal and BoJack Horseman; and producing celeb ancestry series Who Do You Think You Are?
Following her springtime reunion with Friends, Kudrow now leads the cast of Fox’s latest foray into adult-oriented animation, HouseBroken, playing a dog named Honey who runs a therapy group for all the other pets and strays in her neighbourhood.
CTVTVWeek: You’ve previously guest-starred on cartoons, like The Simpsons for instance. What’s your favourite thing about doing animated shows?
Well, it’s fun because you get to keep doing it over and over again... they get to rewrite jokes and hone in on stories and everything—unlike a sitcom, live-action, where they have 10 minutes after the scene to make it perfect. So that’s really great. It’s really fun to see how much funnier it gets and how much more focused it gets. And they are very patient with me finding my character and figuring out what I’m doing.
Is there anything you found terribly challenging or uncomfortable about voice acting?
Well, what I really dislike about it is not seeing everybody else, because I feel kind of new to the animated thing, you know? And it’s hard for me not to see the person that I’m talking to. I have to say, that was really hard.
CTVGiven that it’s inherently socially distanced, was this job just a good fit for the pandemic world or was it simply too good to pass up, quality-wise?
I didn’t want to pass this up. I just said yes, I think, pretty quickly. And it was really fun, and it was great to do something during COVID.
This is a show about a pet therapy group. So, is there a “Smelly Cat” [the title of Phoebe’s signature song on Friends] in the mix?
No, there’s not a Smelly Cat. Look, I don’t even know where to begin with that, but... I mean, I guess, you know, the Gray One [voiced by Jason Mantzoukas] is with a bunch of smelly cats—but that’s none of my business as Honey.
Do you feel like you have a lot in common with Honey?
I think that Honey represents me personally really well: elegant, really smart, caring, great advice—[but] actually overly analytical, controlling and trying to be fun when it’s really not in there.
Housebroken airs Mondays at 9 p.m. on CTV2 & Fox