Friends Central

Courteney Bass Cox (formerly Cox Arquette; born June 15, 1964) is an American actress, film producer, and former model. She gained international recognition for her starring role as Monica Geller in the NBC sitcom Friends (1994–2004). Cox received further recognition for starring as Gale Weathers in the horror film franchise Scream (1996–present).

Cox starred as Lauren Miller in the NBC sitcom Family Ties (1987–1989), Lucy Spiller in the FX drama series Dirt (2007–2008), and Jules Cobb in the ABC/TBS sitcom Cougar Town (2009–2015), the lattermost of which earned her nominations at the Golden Globe Awards and the Critics' Choice Awards. She also starred as Patricia "Pat" Phelps in the Starz horror comedy series Shining Vale (2022–2023).

Cox's other film credits include the action fantasy Masters of the Universe (1987), the comedy Ace Ventura: Pet Detective (1994), the animated comedy Barnyard (2006), the fantasy comedy Bedtime Stories (2008), and the independent drama Mothers and Daughters (2016). She owns the production company Coquette Productions, which was created by Cox and her then-husband David Arquette. She also worked as a director on her sitcom Cougar Town, the television drama film TalhotBlond (2012), and the black comedy drama film Just Before I Go (2014).

Along with the rest of the Friends cast, Cox participated in the 2021 reunion special Friends: The Reunion.


Early life[]

Courteney Cox was born Courteney Bass Cox in Birmingham, Alabama to a wealthy Southern family. Her mother, also named Courteney (née Bass) and her late father, Richard Lewis Cox, was a contractor. Cox has two older sisters (Virginia McFerrin and Dottie Pickett), an older brother (Richard, Jr.) and nine half-brothers and half-sisters. Her parents divorced in 1974, and her father eventually wound up in Panama City, Florida, where he opened a company called Cox Pools, while Cox grew up with her mother and her stepfather, New York businessman Hunter Copeland.

Courteney was raised in a wealthy suburb of Birmingham, Mountain Brook, Alabama where she was known as CeCe. She attended Mountain Brook High School, where she was a cheerleader, tennis player and swimmer. Upon graduation, Cox went to study architecture and interior design at Mount Vernon College for Women. She dropped out after a year to pursue a modeling career, after being signed by the Ford modeling agency in New York City. While modeling, she also took acting classes and worked to lose her southern accent.


Cox first came to prominence in the 1984 music video for Bruce Springsteen's "Dancing in the Dark" (in which she was the pulled-on-stage girl who danced onstage with Springsteen for 26 seconds). Cox is also notable for being the first person to use the word "period" on U.S. television in its physiological sense, in a 1985 advertising campaign for Tampax brand tampons. Her early film roles include Masters of the Universe (1987) and Cocoon: The Return (1988). Cox's early television work include a starring role in the short-lived television series Misfits of Science (1985), and later a recurring role (1987 - 1989) on the television series Family Ties as the last girlfriend of Alex P. Keaton (Michael J. Fox). She had a supporting role as Jewel, the hard-as-nails assistant to Jim Belushi's character in the 1990 fantasy film Mr. Destiny. In 1994, Cox appeared as Meryl, Jerry's girlfriend/pretend wife on the hit TV sitcom Seinfeld.


Monica Geller, the role that gained Cox international recognition

After appearing in the Jim Carrey comedy Ace Ventura: Pet Detective (1994), Cox found fame playing Monica Geller on the hit TV series Friends (1994-2004). She'd originally been asked to audition for the part of Rachel Greene, but she asked for the opportunity to audition for the role of Monica. This was the role for which she would become most famous. The six principal cast members, including Cox, became household names.

During her time on Friends, Cox appeared in the highly successful and high-profile Hollywood films Scream (1996), Scream 2 (1997), and Scream 3 (2000) as the ruthless reporter Gale Weathers. While filming the first of this trilogy, she met her husband David Arquette. Although she starred in several other films during her time on Friends, none achieved the same level of success as the show. Such films include The Runne, 3000 Miles to Graceland and The Shrink Is In. In late 2003, Cox produced the television series Mix It Up. The lifestyle show received low ratings and was not renewed for a second season.

After her Friends role, Cox was producer Marc Cherry's first choice to be offered a starring role as Susan Mayer on Desperate Housewives. However, Cox was unavailable due to her pregnancy and the role went to Teri Hatcher. A couple of years later, Cox signed a deal with ABC Television Studio (formerly Touchstone Television), to star in her own series.

Since Friends, Cox has primarily concentrated on her family but has starred in the independent film November (2005), which had a limited theatrical release, co-starred with Tim Allen in the critically derided Zoom and cameoed in the big budget remake of The Longest Yard, as the girlfriend of Adam Sandler. Cox later said her breasts were digitally enhanced to portray her role as the wife of a quarterback. In 2006 Courteney supplied her voice for the animated film Barnyard.

In 2008, Cox played Lucy Spiller, a tabloid editor, in Dirt, a television drama for the FX Networks. Cox and her then husband, David Arquette, were the executive producers of the series. The same year she appeared again with Adam Sandler in Bedtime Stories, which was initially released in Belgium on December 25.

In 2009, Cox starred in Cougar Town, created by Bill Lawrence (creator of Scrubs), as Jules Cobb. The show ran for six seasons, the final episode airing on March 31, 2015.

In early 2011, Courtney Cox portrayed an author called Gale Weathers in Scream 4 the 4th film of the Scream series. This was 11 years after he portrayal as the same character in 2000.

In May 2021, she participated in the special episode Friends: The Reunion.

Personal life[]

Cox's previous significant others include Ian Copeland and a long-term relationship with actor Michael Keaton. Cox also dated singer Adam Duritz of Counting Crows and appeared in their music video for song "A Long December" in 1997. (Duritz has also dated Cox's Friends co-star Jennifer Aniston.)

Courteney married actor David Arquette on June 12, 1999. They were together for 11 years before they announced their separation on October 11, 2010. After being separated for almost two years, Arquette filed for divorce in June 2012.

On June 13, 2004, she gave birth to their first child, daughter Coco Riley Arquette. The child was originally to be named after her mother as Courteney Cox Arquette. However, Arquette's family objected to this on the grounds that naming a child after a living relative goes against Jewish tradition (David Arquette's mother is Jewish). Coco is a nickname Cox's friends gave her mother when she was a child. Jennifer Aniston is CoCo's godmother.

In June 2007, Cox announced plans to expand her family. The actress said she hopes to have a child through in vitro fertilisation despite battling post-partum depression after Coco's birth.

In late 2013, Courteney began dating Johnny McDaid, a member of the band Snow Patrol. They announced their engagement on June 27, 2014.



Year Title Role Notes
1987 Down Twisted Tarah
Masters of the Universe Julie Winston
1988 Cocoon: The Return Sara
1990 Shaking the Tree Kathleen
Mr. Destiny Jewel Jagger
1991 Blue Desert Lisa Roberts
1992 The Opposite Sex and How to Live with Them Carrie Davenport
1994 Ace Ventura: Pet Detective Melissa Robinson
1996 Scream Gale Weathers
1997 Commandments Rachel Luce
Scream 2 Gale Weathers
1999 The Runner Karina
2000 Scream 3 Gale Weathers
2001 3000 Miles to Graceland Cybil Waingrow
The Shrink Is In Samantha Crumb Also executive producer
Get Well Soon Lily Charles
2004 November Sophie Jacobs
2006 Barnyard Daisy the Cow (voice)
Zoom Marsha Holloway
The Tripper Dog Lover Hippie Also executive producer
2008 Alien Love Triangle Alice Short film
Bedtime Stories Wendy
The Butler's in Love (none) Short film; executive producer
2011 Scream 4 Gale Weathers-Riley
2012 Got Rights? Celebrity Short film
2014 Just Before I Go (none) Director and producer
2016 Mothers and Daughters Beth
2020 You Cannot Kill David Arquette Herself Documentary film
2022 Scream Gale Weathers
2023 Scream VI Gale Weathers Also executive producer


Year Title Role Notes
1984 As the World Turns Bunny Episode: "1.5000"
1985 Code Name: Foxfire Flight Attendant / Amy 2 episodes
1985–1986 Misfits of Science Gloria Dinallo Main role
1986 The Love Boat Carol Episode: "Daredevil / Picture Me a Spy / Sleeper"
Sylvan in Paradise Lucy Apple Television film
Murder, She Wrote Carol Bannister 2 episodes
1987 If It's Tuesday, It Still Must Be Belgium Hana Wyskocki Television film
I'll Be Home for Christmas Nora Bundy Television film
1987–1989 Family Ties Lauren Miller Recurring role
1989 Roxanne: The Prize Pulitzer Jacquie Kimberly Television film
Till We Meet Again Marie-Frederique 'Freddy' de Lancel 2 episodes
1990 Curiosity Kills Gwen Television film
1991 Morton & Hayes Princess Lucy Episode: "Oafs Overboard"
1992 Battling for Baby Katherine Television film
Dream On Alisha Episode: "Come and Knock on Our Door..."
1993 The Trouble with Larry Gabriella Easden Recurring role
1994 Seinfeld Meryl Episode: "The Wife"
1994–2004 Friends Monica Geller Main role
1995 Sketch Artist II: Hands That See Emmy O'Conner Television film
The Larry Sanders Show Herself Episode: "Larry's Big Idea"
Saturday Night Live Herself/Host Episode: "Courteney Cox / Dave Matthews Band"
1999 Happily Every After: Fairy Tales for Every Child Emerald Salt Pork (voice) Episode: "Three Little Pigs"
2000 WCW Monday Nitro Herself Episode: "#5.33"
2003 Mad TV Herself Episode: "#9.3"
2004 Mix It Up (none) 4 episodes; executive producer
2005 Rehab Taylor Kennedy Unsold pilot; also executive producer
Dirt Squirrel (none) Television film; executive producer
Talk Show Diaries (none) Television film; executive producer
The MidNightly News (none) Television film; executive producer
2005–2007 Daisy Does America (none) Executive producer
2007–2008 Dirt Lucy Spiller Main role; also executive producer
2009–2015 Cougar Town Jules Cobb Main role; also director and executive producer
2009 Scrubs Dr. Maddox 3 episodes
Web Therapy Serena DuVall Web series; 3 episodes
2011 Web Therapy Serena DuVall Episode: "Psychic Analysis"
Private Practice Woman Uncredited; Episode: "Step One"
2012 TalhotBlond Amanda Television film; also director and producer
2013 Go On Talia Episode: "Matchup Problems"
Tripaholics None Television film; executive producer
2014–2016 Drunk History Edith Wilson 2 episodes
2014–2017 Celebrity Name Game Herself Also executive producer
2015 Barely Famous Herself Episode: "Favorite Socks"
2016 Charity Case Hailey Unsold pilot; also executive producer
Running Wild with Bear Grylls Herself Episode: "Courteney Cox"
2017 Who Do You Think You Are? Herself Episode: "Courteney Cox"
Off Camera with Sam Jones Herself Episode: "Courteney Cox"
The Gong Show Herself Episode: "Will Arnett / Courteney Cox / Isla Fisher"
2018 Shameless Jen Wagner Episode: "Face It, You're Gorgeous"
2019–2021 9 Months with Courteney Cox Herself / Host Also creator and executive producer
2020 Modern Family Herself Episode: "The Prescott"
Celebrity Escape Room Herself Red Nose Day special
2021 Friends: The Reunion Herself Television special; also executive producer
2022–2023 Shining Vale Patricia "Pat" Phelps Main role; also producer
TBA Last Chance U Brittany Wagner Main role; also executive producer

Music videos[]

Year Title Artist Role Notes
1984 "Dancing in the Dark" Bruce Springsteen Young Woman
1994 "Ace Is In The House" Tone Loc Melissa Robinson
1995 "I'll Be There for You" The Rembrandts Monica Geller
"Good Intentions" Toad the Wet Sprocket Woman
1996 "A Long December" Counting Crows Woman
2014 "Imagine" Various Herself
2021 "Courteney Cox" Connor Price Herself
2021 "Right On Time" Brandi Carlile Director


External links[]