Friends cast release joint statement on passing of Matthew Perry: ‘Utterly devastated’
The five remaining stars of Friends have composed and released a joint statement regarding the death of their co-star Matthew Perry.
Perry, who had played Chandler Bing on the hit NBC sitcom, tragically passed away on Saturday (28 October) after he was found unresponsive in a hot tub at his home.
Now, Perry’s former co-stars Jennifer Aniston, Courtney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, and David Schwimmer have broken their silence.
A statement, signed by all five actors, seen by People, reads: “We are all so utterly devastated by the loss of Matthew. We were more than just cast mates. We are a family.
“There is so much to say, but right now we’re going to take a moment to grieve and process this unfathomable loss.
“In time we will say more, as and when we are able.
“For now, our thoughts and our love are with Matty’s family, his friends, and everyone who loved him around the world.”
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Stars across the entertainment industry have paid heartfelt tributes to Perry after learning the devastating news of his passing, from Maggie Wheeler, who played Chandler’s on-off girlfriend, Janice, to Salma Hayek, who played opposite Perry in the 1997 comedy Fools Rush In.
Many offered their condolences to Aniston, Cox, Kudrow, LeBlanc, and Schwimmer, noting that the six co-stars had truly been like a family.
Kathleen Turner, who had played Chandler’s father on Friends, told People: “I need to emphasize that these kids were a tight group. I was more in and out of his life… They were a clique, all of them. They were a very tight-knit group.”
Perry, a five-time Emmy-nominated actor, was known for more than just his TV and film career.
He had dedicated his final years to speaking about his past struggles with addiction and helping others to achieve sobriety like him.
After suffering from addictions to alcohol and painkillers throughout the height of his fame, Perry spent millions of dollars on rehabilitation treatments and clinics to get clean.
The 17 Again star speaks openly about this time in his life, particularly through his 2022 memoir, Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing.
Not only did Perry hope to help addicts by sharing his story, but he famously converted his Malibu home into a men’s sober living facility called Perry House.
In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, the actor said of his newfound purpose: “I’ve had a lot of ups and downs in my life and a lot of wonderful accolades, but the best thing about me is that if an alcoholic comes up to me and says, ‘Will you help me stop drinking?’ I will say, ‘Yes. I know how to do that.’”
Last year, Perry said in an interview with Q with Tom Power that his work with addicts is what he’d prefer to be remembered for.
“I’d like to be remembered as somebody who lived well, loved well, was a seeker,” Perry said. “And his paramount thing is that he wants to help people. That’s what I want.”
“When I die, I don’t want Friends to be the first thing that’s mentioned. I want [helping people get sober] to be the first thing that’s mentioned. And I’m going to live the rest of my life proving that.”
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