Lisa Kudrow was the first among the Friends gang to become a parent when she welcomed son Julian Stern in 1998, after having her pregnancy written into her character’s arc. (Remember Phoebe being a surrogate for her brother’s triplets?) The comedian’s only child with her husband, advertising executive Michel Stern, is now 23 years old and a budding filmmaker. In honor of his recent birthday, Kudrow shared some rare pictures of Julian, and her famous buddies came out of the woodwork to also wish him many happy returns. To see the actor’s grown up kid now and to see what he’s been up to, read on.
In 2017, per Page Six, Kudrow said in an interview that Julian always wanted to be an only child, and while that wasn’t necessarily the entire reason she and Stern kept their family small, it was a part of it.
“Happy Birthday, Juls!!!” Jennifer Aniston commented on Kudrow’s post. “Feels like yesterday that you arrived ❤️🥳🎈🎉”
Courteney Cox also replied, saying, “Happy Birthday Julian!! ❤️”
Cox’s ex-husband David Arquette‘s comment is a little more mysterious. He wrote simply “CHEESE AND CRACKERs!!!” under the post. Based on Kudrow’s response, it sounds like that’s an old inside joke from Julian’s childhood. “CHEESE AND CRACKERS!!!” she replied. “Julian’s first guffaw courtesy of the wonderful David Arquette!!”
“The six of us would do a huddle backstage and just say, ‘All right, have a good show, love you love you love you love you,'” she explained. “And when I was pregnant, then they would say, ‘Have a great show, love you love you—love you, little Julian!’ ‘Cause we knew it was a boy and that was his name.”
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It seems that spending his earliest days on the set of a hit sitcom led to Julian being bitten by the showbiz bug. He’s currently in film school and just announced a major accomplishment.
“After a long while of procrastinating and gathering up a bunch of unsigned documents I am proud to say that my junior thesis film Mind Made Up has been selected for the Portland Comedy Festival!!!” Julian wrote on Instagram along with a picture of the crew and the film’s poster. “Thanks so much @portland.comedy.film.festival for including my really weird film into your festival!”
His proud mom was among the first to comment, dropping a simple “Woohooo!” and a clapping emoji.
Kimmel asked if Julian, who was 16 at the time, was “old enough” to watch the hit NBC sitcom.
“He’s old enough,” Kudrow answered, “but he’s old enough to know he’s not that interested.”
The host and father pointed out that, in his own experience, kids don’t love watching their parents on TV.
“He loves everybody else,” Kudrow laughed, referring to her cast-mates. “I know that.”
Julian has also poked fun at his connection to the show. In a short 2019 Instagram video, he walks through the Santa Monica Promenade, stopping conspicuously in front of the storefront for an interactive Friends experience that coincided with the show’s 25th anniversary. “And today, we’re gonna go somewhere really special and a little personal to me,” he says before heading in the opposite direction. “We’re goin’ to Lids! Come on, guys!”