Matthew Perry, known for Chandler Bing in "Friends," has passed away at 54. His iconic role and personal battles left a lasting legacy in the entertainment world.
Matthew Perry, best known for his portrayal of Chandler Bing in the beloved TV sitcom Friends, has passed away at the age of 54. The world mourns the loss of a talented actor who left a huge mark on the entertainment industry and our hearts.
Matthew Perry's death occurred at his home in Pacific Palisades, Los Angeles, reportedly due to drowning. The official cause of death is yet to be confirmed, leaving many fans and well-wishers heartbroken. As news of his passing spread, Warner Bros Television Group, the production company behind the legendary show Friends, paid tribute to their "dear friend" and "an incredibly gifted actor." Perry's comedic genius, embodied through Chandler Bing, resonated with audiences worldwide, and his legacy will continue to live on in the hearts of his countless fans.
Before becoming Chandler Bing, Matthew Perry had his share of ups and downs in the entertainment world. He had small roles in various series like Growing Pains, Beverly Hills 90210, and Dream On. However, his big break came when he secured the role of the sarcastic and neurotic Chandler Bing in Friends. The show, featuring a group of six friends navigating life in New York City, became a cultural phenomenon, winning numerous Emmys and achieving record-breaking ratings. The final episode in 2004 garnered over 52 million viewers in the US, making it the most-watched TV episode of the 2000s.
Perry's journey into acting began when he moved to Hollywood at the age of 15, hoping to reconnect with his father. It was there that he discovered his passion for the craft and was eventually spotted by director William Richert while charming patrons at a diner. Richert's note kickstarted Perry's acting career, leading to his role in the movie "A Night in the Life of Jimmy Reardon," alongside the late River Phoenix.
When he first took on the role of Chandler, Matthew Perry was relatively unknown, much like his co-stars Jennifer Aniston, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, and David Schwimmer. Courteney Cox was the exception, known for her role in "Family Ties." Friends co-creator David Crane noted that Chandler was the most challenging character to cast, with several other actors being considered. However, when Perry auditioned, the decision was clear, and he became "the guy" for the role.
Perry's talent did not go unnoticed. He received five Emmy nominations during his career, one for Friends and two for his portrayal of lawyer Joe Quincy on "The West Wing." While working on Friends, Perry also ventured into the world of film, appearing in movies like "Fools Rush In" with Salma Hayek, "Three to Tango" with Neve Campbell, and "The Whole Nine Yards" with Bruce Willis. He made guest appearances in series like "Ally McBeal" and "Scrubs."
Despite his success, Matthew Perry's personal life was marred by addiction. His battle with addiction began in 1997 when he became addicted to pain medication following a jetski accident. Perry openly admitted to not remembering three years of his time on Friends and spending over $9 million on his fight for sobriety. "I was taking 55 Vicodin a day, I weighed 128 pounds, I was on Friends getting watched by 30 million people," he confessed in a 2002 interview. Perry's struggle with severe anxiety during the show's filming made it challenging for him.
Following the conclusion of Friends in 2004, Perry continued his career with roles in TV series like "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip" and the hit comedy "17 Again," alongside Zac Efron. He also made guest appearances on "The Good Wife" and "The Good Fight." Perry led one-season sitcoms "Go On" and a remake of "The Odd Couple," which ran for three seasons. In 2016, he wrote and starred in the play "The End of Longing," which premiered in the West End and later moved to Broadway.
Perry's health struggles continued, and in 2019, he fell into a two-week coma when his colon ruptured due to opiate abuse. He underwent 14 surgeries to repair the damage. In his 2022 memoir, "Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing," he expressed gratitude for surviving despite the odds, shedding light on the challenges of extreme compound addiction intersecting with mega-celebrity. Perry's memoir garnered praise from readers and critics alike, providing a harrowing and revealing look at the intersection of fame and personal battles.
In the end, Matthew Perry's legacy will be remembered not only for the laughter he brought to millions as Chandler Bing but also for his resilience in the face of personal struggles. His journey, from a young aspiring actor to an iconic television star, is a testament to his talent and determination. As the world bids farewell to this beloved actor, we remember the man who made us laugh and touched our hearts.