‘Friends’ Co-Creators Remember Matthew Perry: ‘A Brilliant Talent’

The co-creators and longtime executive producers of Friends paid tribute to Matthew Perry following news of the actor’s death at the age of 54.

“We are shocked and deeply, deeply saddened by our beloved friend Matthew’s passing,” Marta Kauffman, David Crane, and Kevin Bright said in a joint statement to Rolling Stone. “It still seems impossible. All we can say is that we feel blessed to have had him as part of our lives.”

Perry died Saturday at his Los Angeles home in an apparnt drowning, law enforcement sources confirmed to Rolling Stone. A spokesperson for the Los Angeles Police Department said that police “responded at 4:10 this afternoon to a death investigation for a male in his fifties.”

While Perry also starred in shows like Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip and The Good Wife and films like Fools Rush In and The Whole Nine Yards, he was best known for portraying Chandler Bing — “Probably the best comedic character of all time,” as Adele said in her tribute to Perry Saturday — on 10 seasons of Friends. The sitcom was co-created by Kauffman and Crane, who also executive produced alongside Bright.

“He was a brilliant talent. It’s a cliche to say that an actor makes a role their own, but in Matthew’s case, there are no truer words,” the trio continued. “From the day we first heard him embody the role of Chandler Bing, there was no one else for us. We will always cherish the joy, the light, the blinding intelligence he brought to every moment – not just to his work, but in life as well. He was always the funniest person in the room. More than that, he was the sweetest, with a giving and selfless heart.”

Perry’s family said in a statement to People, “We are heartbroken by the tragic loss of our beloved son and brother. “Matthew brought so much joy to the world, both as an actor and a friend. You all meant so much to him and we appreciate the tremendous outpouring of love.”


“Matthew was an incredibly generous actor. There was no single time I stepped onto a stage with him that I did not feel lifted by his brilliance,” Maggie Wheeler, the actress who portrayed Perry’s on-again off-again girlfriend Janice Goralnik on Friends, said in a statement. “Even in his darkest moments, his comedic timing was impeccable. Matthew suffered so terribly as his book revealed to the world. I hope he is at peace beyond that suffering. He died way too soon and he will be missed by all who loved and knew him in life and as the beloved Chandler Bing.”

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who knew Perry from their boyhood days growing up in Ottawa, tweeted, “Matthew Perry’s passing is shocking and saddening. I’ll never forget the schoolyard games we used to play, and I know people around the world are never going to forget the joy he brought them. Thanks for all the laughs, Matthew. You were loved – and you will be missed.”

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