Friends: The Reunion is coming to Asia. WarnerMedia announced Friday that the hotly anticipated Friends reunion special episode will be available on HBO and HBO Go in Southeast Asia (Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam), Hong Kong, and Taiwan. And down under in Australia, Friends: The Reunion will stream on Foxtel’s streaming service Binge. Friends: The Reunion will premiere on HBO Go on Thursday, May 27 at 3:01pm SGT, and on Binge at 5:02pm AEST — that’s the same time as its US premiere on HBO Max at 12am PT on May 27.
If you don’t have access to the HBO Go streaming service, you can catch the Friends reunion episode later on May 27 on HBO Asia at 9pm. This does not apply to India/ South Asia, as neither HBO nor HBO Go are available here. WarnerMedia told Gadgets 360 that there are still no India release plans for Friends: The Reunion.
An HBO Asia premiere was expected for Friends: The Reunion, given WarnerMedia has brought some previous HBO Max originals to Asia in that manner, including the last hot ticket Justice League Snyder Cut. That was also true for Australia, with Binge carrying the Snyder Cut. But while Justice League Snyder Cut was made available in other non-HBO territories (including India) via video-on-demand platforms, WarnerMedia doesn’t seem have to any similar plans for the Friends reunion special episode.
Why is HBO and HBO Go not available in India?
WarnerMedia did have an HBO channel in India until December last year. But it’s been since shut down. Even if it did exist, the India HBO channel wouldn’t have shown Friends: The Reunion owing to licensing strategies. HBO was purely dedicated to showing Warner Bros. movies in India. It never showed HBO originals such as Game of Thrones, let alone HBO Max originals that fall under a different entity. As for HBO Go, WarnerMedia has never brought its streaming service to India. Instead, HBO continues to work with Disney+ Hotstar for all its content.
In keeping with that, WarnerMedia has yet to even discuss HBO Max launch plans for India/ South Asia. HBO Max moves out of its US-exclusive home in June by expanding into Latin America and the Caribbean, and later in 2021, HBO services in Europe will be upgraded to HBO Max. That would suggest that HBO Go Asia will also get a similar treatment down the line.
But in India, WarnerMedia is happy with offering HBO titles to Disney+ Hotstar, while its other content is spread across Netflix (including all 10 seasons of Friends) and Amazon Prime Video (Warner Bros. movies). Do not expect either of the three — Netflix, Disney+ Hotstar, or Prime Video — to have Friends: The Reunion in India.
Friends: The Reunion cast and crew
All of Friends main cast Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry, and David Schwimmer are back for Friends: The Reunion that was filmed at original soundstage, Stage 24, at the Warner Bros. Studio lot in Burbank, California. James Corden will serve as moderator, with guests such as David Beckham, Justin Bieber, BTS, James Corden, Cindy Crawford, Cara Delevingne, Lady Gaga, Elliott Gould, Kit Harington, Larry Hankin, Mindy Kaling, Thomas Lennon, Christina Pickles, Tom Selleck, James Michael Tyler, Maggie Wheeler, Reese Witherspoon, and Malala Yousafzai.
Aniston, Cox, Kudrow, LeBlanc, Perry, and Schwimmer also served as executive producers on the Friends reunion special. Ben Winston is the director and executive producer alongside Friends executive producers Kevin Bright, Marta Kauffman, and David Crane. Friends: The Reunion is a production of Warner Bros. Unscripted Television in association with Warner Horizon, Fulwell 73 Productions and Bright/ Kauffman/ Crane Productions. Emma Conway, James Longman and Stacey Thomas-Muir are co-executive producers.
Friends: The Reunion is out May 27 on HBO Max in the US, Sky (likely) in the UK, Binge in Australia, and HBO Go in Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, and Vietnam.