David Schwimmer, well known for his portrayal of Ross Geller on Friends, is a New York native who grew up in Los Angeles.
Later in his career, Schwimmer shared his time between Chicago and Los Angeles. In Chicago, he made a name for himself as an actor in the city’s booming theater industry. After graduating from Northwestern University with a degree in drama, he spent his time in Los Angeles attending auditions in the hopes of landing a big break in Hollywood.
Schwimmer remains a familiar face on and off the screen. Despite his celebrity, David is one of the few who has managed to keep their personal life hidden from the public eye. Continue reading to learn more about everyone’s favorite Friends actor, David Schwimmer.
David Schwimmer, the star of Friends, has some lesser-known facts.
1) Stephen Colbert Improv
David Schwimmer met Stephen Colbert, another young student on the verge of greatness, at Northwestern University.
When he appeared on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert in 2016, Colbert revealed that he and Schwimmer had not only attended college together but had also performed together. On The Late Show, Colbert reminded Schwimmer,
“You and I were in the same improv group.”
No Fun Mud Piranhas was the troupe’s name, and Colbert even showed the audience a snapshot of the company from when he and Schwimmer were both members. Colbert, in particular, seemed to have loved playing improvs alongside the Friends actor in the company.
2) Co-founder of the Lookingglass Theatre Company
David Schwimmer co-founded Chicago’s Lookingglass Theatre Company with three classmates as a sophomore at Northwestern. According to The Daily Northwestern, Schwimmer told the company’s origin narrative to participants at a presentation at his alma university in 2013.
When he found no practice area supplied by the school, Schwimmer was prepared to lead a school performance of Alice in Wonderland. The tenacious undergraduate leased out his own house by utilizing the money he was granted at his bar mitzvah.
Recalling the occasion, Schwimmer remarked,
“We had this incredible experience which not only linked us as a group but also taught us that with enough chutzpah and dedication we can produce, and we could do it the way we wanted to.”
Soon after, they developed Lookingglass, which has since been transformed into a Chicago landmark. Schwimmer has stayed engaged in theater through the years, directing and participating in various performances.
3) As Michael in The Wonder Years
David Schwimmer had already made a few TV appearances by the early 1990s when he was hired for his most prominent part so far. David portrayed the character of Michael, Karen Arnold’s lover, in the blockbuster series The Wonder Years.
His role appeared in four episodes spanning the program’s fourth and fifth seasons. When Michael and Karen were hitched and moved to Alaska, Schwimmer’s stay on the program ended.
In an interview with Yahoo! Finance, Olivia D’Abo, who portrayed the part of Karen in the show, remarked on the show’s executive producer Bob Brush describing Schwimmer as,
“Sort of dopey and a bit silly, but not too goofy.”
She added, admiring his acting talents and saying,
“He has a quality that you simply fall in love with.”
4) Schwimmer’s journey as a filmmaker
David Schwimmer began directing musicals when he was still a student at Northwestern University and subsequently went on to produce performances for Lookingglass Theatre Company. It’s no surprise that Schwimmer pursued his directorial aspirations onscreen as well.
He wrote and directed the 1998 rom-com Since You’ve Been Gone to make his debut while also making a cameo in the movie, according to his IMDb qualifications.
Schwimmer had been signed as Ross Geller in Friends at the time, and he went on to direct ten episodes of the program and two episodes of Matt LeBlanc’s Friends spinoff titled Joey.
Schwimmer returned to the big screen in 2007 to film the comedy Run Fatboy Run, starring Simon Pegg. He then directed the films Nevermind Nirvana, Americana, and New Car Smell. According to CTV News, Schwimmer then moved on to drama with the 2010 feature Trust, which was a favorite at the Toronto International Film Festival.
5) As Robert Kardashian in The People v. O.J. Simpson
David Schwimmer appeared on 30 Rock, Web Therapy, Entourage, and Episodes after Friends ended. Schwimmer didn’t appear in another show until The People v. O.J. Simpson, a decade after Friends ended.
David Schwimmer is most known for playing Ross Geller on Friends, among other roles. He left an indelible mark on the show and has grown into a fine brother, son, and friend.
At the same time, he has made impressive career moves outside of the series too. These lesser-known facts give fans a glimpse into Schwimmer’s extraordinary life away from the spotlight.