Follow TV Tropes


Creator / Lisa Kudrow

Go To
"I knew an actor's career goes up and down and back up again. Your standing in this business can't be your whole identity; otherwise, you're doomed."

Lisa Valerie Kudrow (born July 30, 1963 in Los Angeles, California) is an American actress, writer, comedian and producer.

She gained worldwide recognition for her ten-season run as Phoebe Buffay in the television sitcom Friends, for which she received many accolades, including an Emmy Award and two Screen Actors Guild Awards. Throughout her career she has received nine Emmy Award nominations, twelve Screen Actors Guild Award nominations, and a Golden Globe Award nomination.


She appeared in:


Tropes associated with her work include:

  • Actor Allusion: When she guest stars on The Simpsons, she tells Lisa "you're such a Phoebe".
  • Actor-Shared Background: She's a vegetarian like Phoebe.
  • The Cast Showoff:
    • Zig-zagged. She actually hates singing and only does it for comedy.
    • She does however speak fluent French, which she demonstrates in Friends.
  • Celebrity Voice Actor:
  • The Danza: She plays Valerie Cherish on The Comeback. Valerie is her middle name.
  • Dawson Casting:
    • She was already in her thirties playing Phoebe in her twenties.
    • Parodied in Bandslam where she has to pretend to be her son's older sister to impress a drummer. Her son says she's 23. The movie was filmed when she was 45.
  • Dye Hard: She's naturally brunette but is best known as a blonde. She's gone brown for Wonderland and The Opposite of Sex.
  • Dyeing for Your Art: She became a redhead for The Comeback.
  • Playing Against Type:
    • She plays a neurotic, repressed spinster in The Opposite of Sex.
    • Wonderland is also probably the darkest film she has ever appeared in, though she only has a small role.
  • Playing Their Own Twin: As both Phoebe and Ursula Buffay on Friends.
  • Real Life Writes the Plot: Phoebe's triplets were written in to accommodate Lisa's real life pregnancy.
  • Separated-at-Birth Casting: Teri Garr resembles her so much that she played her mother in both Friends and Kabluey.
  • She Also Did: That's her in the Ice Cube video for "True to the Game".
  • So My Kids Can Watch: Hotel For Dogs was because she wanted her son to be able to see some of her stuff. It was a similar reason for voicing Aphrodite in Hercules.
  • Throw It In:
    • She was initially cast as Ursula on Mad About You. But when she got the role of Phoebe in Friends, the network wanted to 'explain' why Lisa was seen on two of their shows. So they made the characters twin sisters, and had a crossover episode.
    • For the writing process of The Comeback, Lisa essentially improvised and what she said was transcribed and later filmed.
  • Typecasting: Usually as a Genki Girl or some kind of ditz.
  • What Could Have Been:
    • She tried out for Saturday Night Live but Julia Sweeney got cast instead.
    • She was initially cast as Roz in Frasier but got replaced with Peri Gilpin while rehearsing the pilot episode. This was apparently a mutual decision on both parties.
    • Valerie Cherish was meant to have a sexless marriage in The Comeback. That was changed, because they felt that would make the character too tragic. It was decided to be better that the character "had love but was choosing to walk in front of a train instead."