On Friends, Rachel’s Italian boyfriend Paolo made his mark as a smooth-talking Casanova — and turns out, his lines were almost all ad-libbed.
“I was asked to improvise,” Fusco recently told the Today show in honor of the beloved sitcom’s upcoming 25th anniversary. “I was a little bit skeptical, because my English then wasn’t as good as it is now, let’s face it. But I was told not to speak any English. ‘Just say whatever you want in Italian.’”
“I made up most of the Italian spoken by Paolo,” he admitted. “When I’m standing by the window with Jennifer, and I say, ‘Look at the moon, look at the stars.’ … I just made up those lines.”
Fusco, 56, said he often gets asked what it was like to kiss Jennifer Aniston.
“She was a lovely, adorable young woman — a very talented actress,” he said. And David Schwimmer, who played his on-screen rival Ross, was also “incredibly talented,” he added.
“The combination of the six was amazing, the chemistry was amazing,” he recalled. “And they were so generous with me, because they understood that I was a young guy from Italy thrown into a sitcom.”
“I think the magic was just the combination of the individuals. And the topics — the coming of age and dealing with everyone’s problems. Because I think we can all recognize ourselves in their problems,” he added. “If you watch an episode of Friends, you can still smile at things. You know, you recognize yourself in there still.”
If you’ve got the urge to binge the iconic show in style, you’re in luck. Starting next month, more than 1,000 movie theaters across the country will be screening 12 memorable episodes over three nights, all newly remastered in 4K from the original 35mm camera negative.
Each screening will feature exclusive interviews and never-before-seen content.
Tickets for Friends 25th: The One With The Anniversary event will be available for purchase starting Aug. 16 via Fathom Events.