Matthew Perry, ‘Friends’ star, dead at 54

Beloved actor Matthew Perry, known for his iconic role as Chandler Bing on “Friends,” has passed away at the age of 54.

Matthew Perry tragically lost his life in what appears to be a drowning incident at his Los Angeles residence on a Saturday, as reported by the Los Angeles Times, citing law enforcement sources.

The LA Times’ sources have indicated that there are no suspicions of foul play in this incident.

“We are profoundly heartbroken by the loss of our beloved friend, Matthew Perry. His extraordinary talent as an actor made him an unforgettable member of the Warner Bros. Television Group family. Matthew’s comedic brilliance resonated with people worldwide, leaving an enduring legacy in countless hearts. Today is a day of immense sorrow, and our deepest condolences go out to his family, those he held dear, and the countless devoted fans who cherished him.”

The Los Angeles Police Department is conducting an investigation into a fatality at a location linked to the actor, as confirmed by a law enforcement source who spoke to CNN.

Brian Humphrey, a spokesperson for the Los Angeles Fire Department, informed CNN that they received a 911 call at 4:07 p.m. regarding a water rescue emergency. Humphrey added that the specific body of water in question remains unclear at this time.


In his youth, Perry wholeheartedly dedicated himself to tennis, achieving recognition as a top-ranked player in Canada. Much like his father, young Perry’s relocation to Los Angeles as a teenager led him to discover a burgeoning interest in acting as he shared a life with his father in the city.

Perry’s initial credited role was a minor part in the drama series “240-Robert” in 1979. Subsequently, he landed other minor roles in various shows, such as “Charles in Charge,” “Silver Spoons,” and “The Tracey Ullman Show.”

Perry’s debut in the world of cinema took place while he was still in high school when he appeared alongside River Phoenix in the 1988 film “A Night in the Life of Jimmy Reardon.” In the year prior to the film’s release, Perry took the lead role in the sitcom “Second Chances,” later renamed “Boys Will Be Boys.” The series revolved around a man who passes away and returns to earth to guide his younger self, portrayed by Perry.

Despite the show’s lack of success, Perry’s career flourished as he landed more prominent roles in television series such as “Growing Pains,” “Who’s the Boss?” and “Beverly Hills, 90210.”

‘Friend’-ly fame:

Matthew Perry’s breakout role came in 1994 when he was cast as the sarcastic and affable Chandler Bing on the hit sitcom “Friends.”

Perry received four Primetime Emmy nominations for his performance as Chandler, including one in 2002. He also received two Emmy nominations for his guest role as Joe Quincy on the drama series “The West Wing.”

(“Friends” was a production of Warner Bros. Television, which is owned by CNN’s parent company, Warner Bros. Discovery.)

Matthew Perry starred alongside Courteney Cox, Matt LeBlanc, David Schwimmer, Jennifer Aniston, and Lisa Kudrow in the NBC sitcom Friends, a comedy about a close-knit group of friends living in New York City. The show ran for ten seasons from 1994 to 2004 and became a cultural phenomenon. Perry’s role as Chandler Bing made him a household name.

Perry’s career flourished after Friends, and he starred in several films, including Fools Rush In (1997), Almost Heroes (1998), and The Whole Nine Yards (2000). He also starred in the television shows Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip (2006-2007), Mr. Sunshine (2011), and The Odd Couple (2015-2017).

Perry was known for his self-deprecating humor and his willingness to open up about his struggles with addiction. He was a beloved actor and comedian, and his death is a loss for the entertainment industry and for his fans around the world.

Perry’s recent memoir:

In November 2022, Matthew Perry published a memoir titled Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing, in which he revealed that his colon ruptured due to his opioid addiction when he was 49 years old.

Doctors gave him a 2% chance of survival, and he spent two weeks in a coma followed by months in the hospital. He underwent 14 surgeries to repair the damage to his abdomen and admitted to going to rehab 15 times over the years in an attempt to overcome his addiction.

“What I’m most surprised with is my resilience,” he told People magazine last year. “The way that I can bounce back from all of this torture and awfulness. Wanting to tell the story, even though it’s a little scary to tell all your secrets in a book, I didn’t leave anything out. Everything’s in there.”

Perry has been candid in recent years about his struggles with addiction, which he battled even at the height of his career.

In a CBC interview last year, Perry admitted to taking 55 Vicodin a day and weighing 128 pounds at the height of his addiction. He also said that he can’t watch “Friends” because it reminds him of his struggles.

“I was drinking, taking opiates, drinking, cocaine,” he said. “I could tell season by season, by how I looked. That’s why I don’t wanna watch it, because that’s what I see.”

Perry began dating literary manager Molly Hurwitz in 2018 and the pair got engaged in 2020. They ended their engagement in 2021, with Perry telling People magazine in a statement, “Sometimes things just don’t work out and this is one of them. I wish Molly the best.”

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