Is 'Friends' Really Leaving Netflix in 2019?
UPDATE (6 p.m. ET):
Friends superfans can breathe a sigh of relief — at least, for the next year. Netflix has confirmed that the sitcom will remain on Netflix throughout all of 2019.
The Holiday Armadillo has granted your wish: “Friends” will still be there for you in the US throughout 2019 pic.twitter.com/Yd0VqRzk3r
— Netflix US (@netflix) December 3, 2018
It's still likely that the comedy will move to WarnerMedia's streaming platform in 2020 after it launches in late 2019. However, nothing official has been announced.
Original post (4:30 p.m. ET):
Do we have to say goodbye Monica, Rachel, Chandler, Ross, Phoebe, and Joey? Say it ain't so!
Netflix users and Friends fans freaked over the weekend — Sunday night and Monday morning, specifically — when they weren't able to access the beloved NBC comedy series on the streaming platform.
Not to mention, an expiration date popped up indicating that Friends would be not be available starting January 1, 2019. After a few hours of this "mistake," the date was removed and users could binge at their viewing pleasure.
This comes right as the streamer also suffered another "leak," accidentally revealing the alleged premiere date for the new season of Black Mirror. So is this a sign that they're about to announce the end of the sitcom's time on the platform?
Netflix's chief content officer, Ted Sarandos, addressed the drama Monday, telling The Hollywood Reporter that Friends' "departure is a rumor." And it's a good thing, because people took social media to air their frustration.
THE ONLY REASON I HAVE AN ACCOUNT WITH NETFLIX IS TO REWATCH FRIENDS. WHY @netflix ARE YOU HURTING US.
— Hayley Kiyoko (@HayleyKiyoko) December 3, 2018
Netflix is really removing Friends on January 1st and the only reason I have an account is to rewatch the same episodes of the show whenever I’m bored so I guess it’s time to cancel my subscription
— sai (@Saisailu97) December 3, 2018
I’m canceling #Netflix if they remove friends
— Kristan (@HereisKristan) December 3, 2018
Me @ netflix when i found out they’re taking friends off pic.twitter.com/PZr1XbNBcu
— emma (@emmacoy_) December 2, 2018
But we're not exactly out of the woods. THR also notes that brief mishap could be part of the ongoing negotiations Netflix is having with Warner Bros. parent company WarnerMedia because WarnerMedia is launching its own streaming service in late 2019, and probably will take Friends with it.
"Content like Friends is likely to disappear from Netflix in 2019 as WarnerMedia launches its own SVOD service," said BTIG analyst Rich Greenfield.
Friends with its Central Perk pals started streaming on Netflix on January 1, 2015.