On the surface, with the exception of the fact that they’re both products of the 1990’s, the film Home Alone and the hit NBC sitcom Friends don’t really have much in common.
Home Alone was about a young boy named Kevin—played by Macaulay Culkin — who was accidentally abandoned by his parents and had to fight the criminals who wanted to steal his family’s stuff.
In case you’re that one person on the planet who hasn’t seen an episode of the show, Friends was about insanely attractive people in their 20’s and 30’s who were inexplicably able to afford ridiculously expensive clothing and ludicrously large apartments in New York City.
Just in case anyone is wondering: there is almost no way that a chef and waitress would be able to afford an apartment in New York City as large as Rachel and Monica’s apartment was.
So the two works of fiction, despite both having “premiered” in the 1990’s, aren’t otherwise related, right? Well, actually, that’s wrong. There’s a bizarre connection that went unnoticed for years and years.
At the end of Friends, the happily married couple Chandler and Monica Bing (spoiler alert, by the way) decided to move out of their enormous apartment and into an enormous house. They had just adopted twins, and even that apartment wasn’t large enough for the four of them.
Fun fact: Monica and Chandler’s twins were named Jack and Erica, which is an intentional reference to the American soap opera All My Children. Gunther, the coffee shop employee who had a crush on Rachel for the duration of Friends, claimed to have played a character on All My Children.
Also, the name Chandler might be a reference to a very prominent family on the ABC daytime drama. Actually, all of the major characters on the show were allegedly named after characters from All My Children.
Considering the fact that Joey was a soap opera actor on the soap Days of Our Lives, it is pretty safe to say that the creators of Friends were soap opera fans.
I digress. Going back to the link between Home Alone and Friends, Chandler and Monica actually ended up moving into the house belonging to Kevin McCallister, the protagonist of Home Alone. No joke. The view from their new home’s window is precisely what you’d see when looking out the McCallister’s window.
Stock footage was used when filming the final season of Friends—footage which showed the house and neighborhood—and that footage just happened to be from Home Alone. The actual owner of the house Kevin McCallister famously defended from burglars in the film confirmed that his house was also the one into which Chandler and Monica moved.
The episode of Friends concerning the house in question aired well over a decade after Home Alone was initially released.
Chandler and Monica, by the way, were moving into a house in the state of New York; Home Alone (at least the first one) was set in Chicago. Apparently no one working on Friends ever expected anyone to take particular note of the stock footage used. Many, many years after Friends aired its series finale, however, people did.
All of this raises a lot of questions. The most important question is this: how did Chandler and Monica afford such a nice house? By the end of the series, Chandler had a relatively unimpressive job in marketing, and Monica was a chef. In 2012, that house “they bought” sold for over $1.5 million! It was, at one point, listed at over $2 million.
While we’re on the subject of Home Alone, it is worth noting that the film had a sequel during which Kevin McCallister ended up stranded in New York City because of—you know—shenanigans. Using his parents’ extreme wealth and his innate ability to lie really well, Kevin ended up scoring a room at the Plaza Hotel, which was owned by the billionaire businessman who would become President of the United States 15 or so years later.
Naturally, because he was really into making cameo appearances in works of fictions back in the day, Donald Trump played himself in a cameo appearance. Kevin was looking for the lobby of the Plaza Hotel, and Donald Trump just happened to be around and happily able to offer directions to the film’s young protagonist.
It has been argued by the late film critic Roger Ebert that Trump’s appearance in Home Alone 2 — note that Ebert called Trump’s appearance heartwarming is the reason Trump had such success in Hollywood in the 90’s.
As a result, that cameo might be the reason Trump scored The Apprentice gig, which made him far more famous than he already was. This is a bit of a stretch, perhaps, but his appearance in that movie—which led to The Apprentice—may therefore be the reason or at least partially responsible for the fact that Trump is currently the President of the United States.