The Life & Career of Michel Stern, Lisa Kudrow’s Husband

Albert Wilson

Michel Stern

Lisa Kudrow, widely recognized for her iconic role as Phoebe Buffay on the beloved sitcom “Friends,” has captured the hearts of millions with her humor and charm. Behind her success stands a supportive and accomplished partner, Michel Stern. Despite maintaining a low profile, Stern’s life and career are intriguing and worth exploring. This article delves into the life of Michel Stern, detailing his journey from France to becoming a notable advertising executive in the United States, his relationship with Lisa Kudrow, and his contributions to their family life.

Early Life and Career

A French Beginning

Michel Stern was born and raised in France, a country known for its rich culture and history. Although little is known about his early years, his French heritage undoubtedly influenced his personality and career aspirations. Also, read about Jody Morrill Wolcott here.

Michel Stern

Career in Advertising

Stern moved to the United States with the ambition of building a career in advertising, a field that demands creativity and strategic thinking. Over the years, he has enjoyed significant success in the industry. Despite being married to a high-profile actress, Stern has managed to keep his professional life private, demonstrating his dedication to his work and his preference for a low-key lifestyle.

Meeting Lisa Kudrow

An Unconventional Beginning

Michel Stern, a French advertising executive, first crossed paths with Lisa Kudrow in the 1980s under unique circumstances. At that time, Lisa was sharing an apartment with a French roommate who was dating Michel. Recalling their initial encounter, Lisa mentioned, “I was living with a French girl, and he had just moved here, and they were dating when we first met. But I’m freakishly polite, so I saw him and thought, ‘Well, he’s the perfect man, and it’s all ruined because now they’re together and I can’t.'” Despite an immediate attraction, Lisa maintained her politeness, refraining from flirting with Michel.

Fate Intervenes

Their story took a turn when Michel and Lisa’s roommate ended their relationship after two months. However, it wasn’t until six years later, at a birthday party, that Lisa and Michel reconnected. This time, they began a relationship that has stood the test of time.

Family Life


In 1998, Lisa Kudrow and Michel Stern welcomed their son, Julian Murray Stern. Kudrow’s pregnancy coincided with her role on “Friends,” where her character, Phoebe Buffay, served as a surrogate mother for her brother’s triplets. This unique parallel between her real life and her on-screen role added a special dimension to her experience.

Michel Stern

Julian’s Achievements

Julian Murray Stern has grown into a remarkable young man, achieving academic success with his graduation from the University of Southern California in 2021. Kudrow has shared moments of pride and joy regarding Julian’s milestones on social media, highlighting the close-knit nature of their family.

Relationship Dynamics about Michel Stern

Balancing Privacy and Public Life

Despite being married to a celebrity, Michel Stern has maintained a low profile, rarely appearing in the public eye. However, the couple does make occasional public appearances, such as at red-carpet events and premieres, showcasing their strong bond and mutual support.

Coping with Challenges

Like any long-term relationship, Kudrow and Stern have faced their share of challenges. During the COVID-19 pandemic, they spent extended periods apart due to quarantine measures. Kudrow’s candid revelation about their time apart and their approach to celebrating their 25th wedding anniversary with simplicity underscores their commitment to their marriage.

Commitment and Independence

In a 2014 interview with Glamour, Kudrow shared insights into their marriage. She emphasized the importance of commitment to resolving issues and respecting each other’s independence. This balance of togetherness and individuality has been a cornerstone of their successful relationship. Lisa likens their marriage to being on a team, emphasizing the importance of having the same goals while recognizing each other’s differences.

Public Appearances

Red Carpet Moments

While Michel Stern prefers to stay out of the limelight, he has accompanied Kudrow to several significant events over the years. Notable appearances include the premiere of HBO’s “The Comeback” in 2005 and the 10th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards in 2004. These moments highlight the couple’s mutual respect and support for each other’s professional endeavors.

A Love Story Cemented During the “Friends” Era

Lisa Kudrow and Michel Stern tied the knot in 1995, just after the first season of “Friends” wrapped. The show played a significant role in their lives, with Lisa’s pregnancy being woven into the storyline in the fourth season. Reflecting on that period, Lisa shared, “The six of us would do a huddle backstage and just say, ‘All right, have a good show, love you love you love you love you.’ And when I was pregnant, then they would say, ‘Have a great show, love you love you—love you, little Julian!'”

Support from the “Friends” Cast

The camaraderie and support from her co-stars extended beyond the show, contributing to a warm and inclusive environment. The “Friends” reunion special on HBO Max in May 2021 coincided with Lisa and Michel’s 26th wedding anniversary, underscoring the show’s deep connection to their personal lives.

Michel Stern


Michel Stern may not be a household name, but his influence and support have been pivotal in the life and career of Lisa Kudrow. From his early days in France to his successful career in advertising and his enduring marriage, Stern’s story is one of quiet strength and unwavering dedication. As we celebrate Lisa Kudrow’s achievements, it is equally important to acknowledge the man who has stood by her side, contributing to her personal and professional success.

Lisa Kudrow and Michel Stern’s love story is a testament to enduring love, mutual respect, and the importance of personal growth within a relationship. Their journey from a chance meeting to a long-lasting marriage serves as an inspiration to many, proving that true love can withstand the test of time.

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