Insights into Katherine Heigl and Sarah Chalke’s true friendship

Katherine Heigl and Sarah Chalke’s Netflix series Firefly Lane tells the story of a friendship that has endured decades of life’s twists and turns. Before reuniting on screen, both actors had successful television careers as doctors. Chalke appeared on the sitcom Scrubs throughout its nine-year run, while Heigl made her dramatic exit from the drama Grey’s Anatomy after five years in Shondaland. The actors’ medical series were dramatically different – much like their Firefly Lane characters.

Heigl plays Tully, whose confident and outgoing personality helps her break into the entertainment industry. Chalke portrays her childhood best friend, Kate, who is pretty much Tully’s antithesis. In an interview with 5 NBC DFW, both actors said they have more in common with the less confident Kate. “I just relate so much to her as a mother and how she struggles with worrying about how motherhood is going to affect her,” Chalke said. She also confessed that like Kate, she is a stickler for the rules.

While Heigl said her fear of being disliked made it impossible to be as unabashedly confident and uninhibited as Tully, she explained that she’s become a bit more like her character as she’s gotten older. “I feel like I have a little more chutzpah now that I can stand up for myself a little better and with a little more grace,” Heigl told Forbes. Not only did Heigl and Chalke find common ground with their characters, but they bonded immediately before a random casting decision made them colleagues.

Sarah Chalke became friends with Katherine Heigl before joining the cast of Firefly Lane

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After Katherine Heigl decided to serve as executive producer and lead actress on Firefly Lane, she had to pack her bags and travel to Vancouver, where the series was being filmed. She had no knowledge of the area and was in dire need of advice on moving, a mystery she discussed with her former Suits co-star Dulé Hill. Per Parade, Hill knew Sarah Chalke, who happened to live in Vancouver — and he set Heigl up with helpful “How I Met Your Mother” alum. “Most of the time we talked about kids, schools and neighborhoods,” Chalke recalls. “We just bonded instantly and had a lot in common.”

While Heigl didn’t immediately consider Chalke as a potential co-star, she later realized her new friend was the obvious choice. “When they were mentioned to me as an option for Kate, I was like, ‘Oh my god, she would be amazing because I love her,'” Heigl told Parade. “She’s just an effortlessly good person.” Series creator Maggie Friedman confirmed to Forbes that Heigl and Chalke didn’t have to fake their warm feelings for each other during filming, and journalist Dana Feldman noted that the actors’ genuine friendship was evident in her interview with them.

Chalke told Manny The Movie Guy that she and Heigl enjoyed each other’s company so much that they spent time together on their days off. And in an interview with The Washington Post, she even described Heigl as “someone I’ll be friends with for life.”

Sarah Chalke and Katherine Heigl both have friendships like Kate and Tully’s

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Sarah Chalke and Katherine Heigl only became best friends later in life. Like their Firefly Lane characters, however, both women have forged special bonds with some of their earliest friends who have stood the test of time – so clear that a deep, meaningful connection is important to both actors.

Chalke met her true platonic soulmate, Jen, in kindergarten. The two pals were so in sync that they both eventually decided to work in the entertainment industry. “So we packed our truck and moved to LA,” Chalke recalled to Parade. “It’s just one of those happy friendships where we’ve probably spoken every day for the last several decades.” In an interview with Forbes, Chalke went on to talk about her trust in Jen, whose friendship played a crucial part in her success. “I couldn’t have done it without her,” she said.

Heigl described the group of girls she was close friends with as a teenager in an Instagram post. “We pushed and pulled and cheered and carried each other. We laughed more than we cried, but we cried a little too,” she wrote. They drifted apart as they got older, but in a cinematic twist, the sorority, which Heigl dubbed the “Holy Six,” reunited at a high school reunion decades later. “We’ve kept in touch ever since,” Heigl told People. “Having this history is what makes this bond between us so strong.”