Matthew Perry, the iconic TV actor and TV 'friend' to many of us, has died at the age of 54.
As reported by the Los Angeles Times, Perry was found deceased at his home on Saturday, October 29. There are unconfirmed reports as to the causes for the actor's passing, but we caution everyone to wait for clarification before presuming what happened.
Perry was best known for his co-starring role as Chandler Bing in the iconic '90s sitcom Friends. The show, which ran on NBC for 10 years, continues to live on as one of the most syndicated TV shows around the world.
"We are incredibly saddened by the too soon passing of Matthew Perry," an NBC spokesperson told the LA Times. "He brought so much joy to hundreds of millions of people around the world with his pitch perfect comedic timing and wry wit. His legacy will live on through countless generations."
“We are devastated by the passing of our dear friend Matthew Perry,” Warner Bros. Television Group, which produced Friends, said in a statement to the LA Times. “Matthew was an incredibly gifted actor and an indelible part of the Warner Bros. Television Group family. The impact of his comedic genius was felt around the world, and his legacy will live on in the hearts of so many. This is a heartbreaking day, and we send our love to his family, his loved ones, and all of his devoted fans.”
Perry was a second-generation actor - the son of TV actor John Bennett Perry and press agent Suzanne Marie Langford. Like many second-generation actors, Matthew Perry started as a child with roles in the TV shows Charles in Charge and the movie Beverly Hills 90210.
He became a celebrity with his 10-year run as Friends' Chandler Bing, a dashing, dry and quick-witted man who seemed to mirror Perry's real-life persona. The actor parlayed the success into a run of high-profile movies and TV shows, as well as a series of celebrity romances.
Like many of us however, Perry had a lifelong struggle with addiction - in his case to alcohol and opiods. In his 2022 memoir Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing, Perry told of having his first drink at age 14 - and by the age of 21, recognized himself as an alcoholic. In his later years, he estimated he'd spent in excess of $7 million on various stints in rehab, with this addiction causing several real-life health ssues.
While it is easy to speculate, it is unknown whether the actor's death is attributed to Perry's addiction issues.
When asked several years ago how he'd like to be remembered, Pery said "As a guy who lived life, loved well, lived well and helped people. That running into me was a good thing, and not something bad."