Janice, also known as Chandler Bing’s on-and-off girlfriend from hell, was one of the most memorable characters on “Friends.” Known for her distinct nasally voice and her hilarious catchphrase, “Oh, my god,” fans could hear Janice coming from a mile away.
Maggie Wheeler, the actress who played Janice, appeared on Australian talk show “This Morning” on Monday and left many fans shocked that she didn’t actually sound like Janice in real life. Because, you know, acting.
The actress recreated Janice’s catchphrase for the hosts and then spoke about developing her character’s iconic voice.
“It was this progression ― how Janice evolved, how the writers created the character for me,” Wheeler said. “And so the laugh happened organically in the first rehearsal, because I needed to find a way to laugh because Matthew Perry is so funny. And working with him, I knew right away, I thought, ‘This guy’s gonna make me laugh on set, I’ve gotta be prepared. What am I going to do?’ So I created Janice’s laugh just as a safety measure for when Matthew made me laugh.”
Since “Friends,” the actress has worked steadily doing voice work and landing roles on “Californication,” “How I Met Your Mother” and “Everybody Loves Raymond.” In 2014, Wheeler appeared on Oprah’s “Where Are They Now?” series and opened up about her guest spot on “Friends.”
“Every time Janice came and went, the door was left a little bit open, but we never really knew,” Wheeler said. “Then, they’d call me out of the blue and I would just wait with bated breath for that script to drop at the door.”
The actress added, “Whatever time of night it was — 1 o’clock in the morning, 2 o’clock in the morning — I would drag that thing in and start leafing through it just to figure out what they were going to do with her next.”