Entertainment TV Lily Tomlin Says 'Grace and Frankie' 'Deepened' Her Friendship with Jane Fonda: 'Seemed So Natural' Tomlin, 82, was introduced by her Grace and Frankie costar Fonda on Friday at Tomlin's Hand and Footprint Ceremony at the TCL Chinese Theatre By Dan Heching Dan Heching Digital News Writer, PEOPLE People Editorial Guidelines and Scott Huver Published on April 23, 2022 12:07 AM Share Tweet Pin Email Photo: Emma McIntyre/Getty Lily Tomlin is sharing more about her longstanding friendship with Jane Fonda — and how their series Grace and Frankie helped them grow even closer. In an exclusive chat with PEOPLE after her Hollywood Hand and Footprint Ceremony at the TCL Chinese Theatre on Friday as part of the TCM Classic Film Festival, Tomlin, 82, says her friendship with Fonda, 84, "deepened" as a result of the Netflix show. "I love Jane from a long time ago. And so it seemed so natural," Tomlin says of working with Fonda, with whom she first costarred in 1980's groundbreaking comedy 9 to 5. "The show was offered to us. And I just knew we would do it because it was about something that was important to us, aging women, and them not being marginalized and being treated like human beings and how they would want to be treated and thought of," she continues. "And so it just felt so natural. I didn't even expect, she didn't expect it either. We didn't expect to be on a hit series at this point in our lives." On Friday, Fonda introduced Tomlin during the imprint ceremony, honoring Tomlin's unparalleled career, and got emotional in the process. "I can't stop crying. I'm very moved to be here. It's a real honor," Fonda said while introducing her dear friend and longtime collaborator. Emma McIntyre/Getty Grace and Frankie Come to Terms With Aging, How One Will 'Lose the Other' in Final Season Trailer The Oscar winner then continued with some playful jabs, saying, "Lily's been pushing me around for decades, so I'm really glad she's going to put her hands in cement," referring to the tradition of stars putting their hands and feet in cement in front of the landmark Los Angeles movie theater. "Maybe they'll get stuck, and her feet, too." Fonda went on to say that "acting is a profession of empathy," adding that "Lily Tomlin, I think, carries an extraterrestrial bag of empathy with her." "She has more empathy than anybody I've ever met, and I think that's one of the reasons why her comedy is so different than most comedians." RELATED VIDEO: Grace And Frankie Star Brooklyn Decker Says She Is "Still Starstruck" When Working With Jane Fonda Fonda also said that while "99 percent of comedians make people laugh at the expense of somebody" else, Tomlin never does. "I've worked with her now for a whole long time, since the 1970s, and she is always fighting against any words or statements that would hurt someone's feelings," she said. She finished her heartfelt introduction by saying, "It is with deep love and gratitude and respect that I want to bring up here now the one and only Lily Tomlin." Judy Greer Reveals Her Best On-Screen Kiss Was with Lily Tomlin: 'She Has Very Soft Lips' Upon accepting the honor, Tomlin made some jokes as well: "As a young performer, I dreamt the sky was the limit, and here I am being celebrated as a sidewalk. What a journey it's been from having to hit the pavement to being the pavement." She then thanked her "dear friend" Fonda, saying, "One of the thrills is knowing my slab of concrete will end up near the one made by the brilliant and beautiful woman who introduced me." Tomlin also recognized Marta Kauffman and Howard Morris, the creators of Grace and Frankie. "[They] had this radical belief that women don't outgrow desire, friendship, humor, and relevance. They created Grace and Frankie. Like all visionaries, they didn't play the game, they changed the game. It became the longest running series in Netflix history," she said. Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to compelling human interest stories. Grace and Frankie is currently in its seventh and final season, with the last batch of episodes set to drop on Netflix on April 29. A highlight in the last episode is that the two stars will finally be joined by their 9 to 5 costar Dolly Parton. "She's on the last episode. And that was one of our favorite episodes," Tomlin tells PEOPLE. "We really loved doing that and having Dolly there." "We'd done things together in the recent past, like presented on award shows and stuff like that," she continues. "It seemed right," she adds, before remarking of Parton, "Thank God you showed up. It was almost too late!"