Reese Witherspoon Says She Brought Her Baby to the Famous ‘Friends’ Set

“I got to put her on the couch in Central Perk.”

Reese Witherspoon says she brought her baby to the set of 'Friends.'
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Reese Witherspoon has some extremely fond memories of her time on the set of the beloved television series Friends and despite being nervous.

"Being on Friends, still to this day, is one of my scariest moments ever, because it was in front of a live audience, and I had never really done theater. I'd never been in front of a live audience," the actress told People.

For the uninitiated, Witherspoon played Jill Green, the younger sister to Jennifer Aniston's iconic character Rachel Green, who ended up attempting to date Aniston's love interest, Ross Geller, play by David Schwimmer.

Anxious or not, Witherspoon did bring baby Ava, now 24, to the show's historic set.

"Jen was just the sweetest to me," Witherspoon explained. "I'd just had a baby, and I remember her and Courteney running to my dressing room going: 'Can we see the baby?' 'You have a baby?' I was like: 'I do y'all, I have a baby.' They were like: 'Can we hold the baby?'"

"The One with Rachel's Sister" Episode 13

"The One with Rachel's Sister" Episode 13

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Not only did Ava get some very special attention and love from the Friends cast, she was able to spend some time on an iconic part of the historic television show's set.

"I got to put her on the couch in Central Perk, and still have a little picture of her at Central Perk," she says of the show's famous coffee shop and workplace of Gunther, played by the late, great James Michael Tyler.

In a 2023 appearance on Late Night with Seth Meyers, Witherspoon once again reiterated that she was "terrified" while shooting the episode.

"I was out of my body," she told the late night host at the time. "I was—my body was there and then my head and my brain were somewhere else."

She went on to say that she can "still remember" her lines, and that she will always remember that she appeared on friends "23 years ago because now my baby is 23."

Reese Witherspoon and Ava Phillippe attends the Fendi Haute Couture Spring/Summer 2024 show as part of Paris Fashion Week on January 25, 2024 in Paris, France.

Reese Witherspoon and Ava Phillippe attends the Fendi Haute Couture Spring/Summer 2024 show as part of Paris Fashion Week on January 25, 2024 in Paris, France.

(Image credit: Getty Images)

In a 2019 interview with Harper's Bazaar, The Morning Show star recalled how Aniston helped calm her down as she prepared to film her Friends appearance in front of a live audience.

"She was so sweet to me. I was really nervous, and she was like: 'Oh, my gosh—don’t worry about it!' I marveled at her ability to perform in front of a live audience like that with no nerves," she said at the time.

"They would change all the lines and she was just so effortlessly affable, bubbly, and sunny," she added. "We’ve been friends ever since."

Danielle Campoamor is an award-winning freelance writer covering mental health, reproductive justice, abortion access, maternal mental health, politics, celebrity, and feminist issues. She has been published in The New York Times, Washington Post, CNN, NBC, Vogue, Harper's Bazaar, Marie Claire, InStyle, Playboy, Teen Vogue, Glamour, The Daily Beast, and more.