Friends creator Marta Kauffman admits she 'didn't do enough' to promote diversity

FRIENDS -- Season 2 -- Pictured: (l-r) Matthew Perry as Chandler Bing, Jennifer Aniston as Rachel Green, David Schwimmer as Ross Geller, Courteney Cox as Monica Geller, Matt LeBlanc as Joey Tribbiani, Lisa Kudrow as Phoebe Buffay (Photo by NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty Images)

Marta Kauffman, best known as the creator hit sitcom Friends, has admitted she “didn’t do enough” during her career to promote diversity.

Taking part in the 2020 ATX TV… From the Couch virtual panel, the showrunner became emotional when talking about diversity and admitted she could have done more.

Read more: Lisa Kudrow says her car was searched every night after Friends filming

She said: “I wish I knew then what I know today. Sorry, I just wish I knew then what I know now. I would’ve made very different decisions. 

“I mean we’ve always encouraged people of diversity in our company, but I didn’t do enough and now all I can think about is what can I do?”

Executive producer Marta Kauffman attends "Friends" 25th Anniversary during 2019 Tribeca TV Festival at Regal Battery Park Cinemas on September 13, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by John Lamparski/Getty Images for Tribeca TV Festival)

She added:, “What can I do differently? How can I run my show in a new way? And that’s something I not only wish I knew when I started showrunning, but I wish I knew all the way up through last year.”

Friends was a huge hit and is still popular today, more than 15 years after the final episode aired.

However, it is often criticised when held up to modern standards, with one issue being the shows apparent lack of black and minority characters.

The topic has been discussed often, and Kauffman is the latest person linked to the show to address it.

Earlier this year, David Schwimmer, who played Ross Gellar on the show, admitted to being “well aware” of the lack of diversity, but insisted it was “groundbreaking” in other ways.

He told The Guardian: “I campaigned for years to have Ross date women of colour.

(L to R) Actors David Schwimmer, Lisa Kudrow, Matthew Perry, Courteney Cox Arquette, Jennifer Aniston and Matt LeBlanc pose backstage during the 54th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards at the Shrine Auditorium on September 22, 2002 in Los Angeles, California. Aniston won Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series for "Friends." (Photo by Robert Mora/Getty Images)

"One of the first girlfriends I had on the show was an Asian American woman, and later I dated African American women. That was a very conscious push on my part."

He added: “Maybe there should be an all-black Friends or an all-Asian Friends.”

Read more: Lisa Kudrow reveals her son is 'not a fan' of her work

Lisa Kudrow, who played Phoebe Buffay, has also commented recently.

She told The Sunday Times last month: “Well, it would not be an all-white cast, for sure.”