"It was like being with your best friend. We would hit the ground running," says Paul Reiser of his costar Helen Hunt

By Aili Nahas
November 14, 2019 09:00 AM
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It’s been 20 years since the Mad About You finale, but stars Helen Hunt and Paul Reiser haven’t let a couple decades affect their friendship.

“We had lunch every few months,” Hunt, 56, tells PEOPLE about staying in touch with her onscreen husband. “I’d hear about what he was working on or how his kids were and vice versa.”

Adds Reiser, 63: “It was like being with your best friend. We would hit the ground running. And I’ll tell you something people might not know about Helen Hunt. She [likes] Chinese chicken salad without the chicken!”

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Helen Hunt and Paul Reiser
Everett

Now, Hunt and Reiser are back in familiar territory, shooting the reboot of their seminal series, which ran from 1992-1999. In the revival, which premieres Nov. 20 on Spectrum Originals, Hunt and Reiser’s Jamie and Paul Buchman are navigating life as their grown daughter heads off to college.

“Working with Paul is the most fun,” says Hunt. “We are so like-minded and that’s just very comforting. It’s a rare thing to find someone who shares your taste and sensibility.”

Reiser says, “I feel bad for the people around us. We just mutter code words. And people overhear us and say, ‘You sound like an old married couple!’ ”

Brook Pifer/Sony Pictures Television/Spectrum Originals

Hunt admits that in stepping back into her role 20 years later, “I felt nervous.” Adds Reiser: “We didn’t want to fall short of our own standards. But then we thought, well we’re pretty demanding of ourselves and we’re pretty good at this!”

Still, don’t ask them to recite any old episodes from memory.

“There are episodes I look back on [that I’ve forgotten] and I think, ‘We did that?’ ” he asks. “We were babies!”