Saved by the Bell's Tiffani Thiessen Almost Played Rachel on Friends

Rachel Murray, Getty Images for Num Noms
Rachel Murray, Getty Images for Num Noms

​With many of our favorite TV shows, we can't imagine the main characters being played by anyone else but the beloved actors who brought the roles to life. For instance, Jennifer Lawrence ​almost playing Serena van der Woodsen on Gossip Girl? Can't imagine it. And for an even more classic show like Friends, it's hard to imagine Rachel Green being played by anyone other than Jennifer Aniston.

While on Nikki Glaser's SiriusXM show, Tiffani Thiessen ​revealed she almost landed the role of Rachel Green. Yep, that's right, the same Tiffani Thiessen who played another iconic character: Kelly Kapowski on Saved by the Bell.

"Did you know I tested for Friends, for Jennifer Aniston?" Thiessen said on the show. "I was just a little too young. I was a little too young to the pairing of the rest of them."

Thiessen did recognize Aniston's great job in the role, calling her "very, very funny."

Many other famous stars auditioned for some of the main roles in Friends. Eric McCormack tried out for Ross Geller before he landed the title role in Will & Grace; Jane Krakowski, of 30 Rock and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, also auditioned for Rachel; Vince Vaughn wanted to be Joey Tribbiani; and Leah Remini almost scored the role of Monica Geller.

While there are countless talented actors out there, we don't think anyone would've done the job better than the six stars of Friends. The sitcom is still a major staple today, even nearly 15 years after it ended. The cast might have something to do with that.

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Wa Wa Wee Wa: The Origin of Borat's Favorite Catchphrase

Wa wa wee wa! Sacha Baron Cohen is back in Borat Subsequent Moviefilm: Delivery of Prodigious Bribe to American Regime for Make Benefit Once Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan (2020).
Wa wa wee wa! Sacha Baron Cohen is back in Borat Subsequent Moviefilm: Delivery of Prodigious Bribe to American Regime for Make Benefit Once Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan (2020).
Courtesy of Amazon Studios

When Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan was released in 2006, a new audience was exposed to Borat Sagdiyev, a “journalist” portrayed by Sacha Baron Cohen who had made frequent appearances on the comedian’s Da Ali G Show.

Soon, in our country there was problem: People mimicked Borat’s catchphrases, "very nice" and “wa wa wee wa,” incessantly. The latter phrase was used to denote surprise or happiness on Borat’s part. While some may have assumed it was made up, it turns out that it actually means something.

Wa wa wee wa is Hebrew, which Cohen speaks throughout the film and which helped make Borat a hit in Israel. (Cohen is himself Jewish.) It was taken from an Israeli comedy show and is the equivalent of the word wow. Reportedly, the expression was popular among Israelis, and they appreciated Cohen’s use of it.

The original Borat also sees Cohen singing a popular Hebrew folk song, “Koom Bachur Atzel,” or “get up lazy boy,” among other Hebrew mentions. It remains to be seen how much of it he’ll be speaking in the sequel, Borat Subsequent Moviefilm: Delivery of Prodigious Bribe to American Regime for Make Benefit Once Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan. It premieres on Amazon Prime Friday, October 23.

[h/t The Los Angeles Times]