'Friends' Star Matthew Perry Dead at 54

MONDAY, Oct. 30, 2023 (HealthDay News) – Matthew Perry, one of the stars of the beloved television sitcom “Friends,” died on Saturday.

Perry, 54, was best known for his portrayal of Chandler Bing in the long-running show, but he also starred in many other roles.

Capt. Scot Williams, of the Los Angeles Police Department’s Robbery-Homicide division, confirmed Perry’s death, the New York Times reported. Investigators saw no sign of foul play, but the cause of death has not been determined.

The actor had spoken openly about his history of addiction in interviews and in the memoir he released in 2022, called “Friends, Lovers and the Big Terrible Thing.”

In 1997, he went to rehab for an addiction to pain medication, according to news reports at the time.

He was hospitalized for pancreatitis in 2000, an inflammation that can be caused by alcohol and drug abuse, the Times reported.

Then in 2018, he developed pneumonia, suffered an exploded colon, spent time on life support, was in a coma for two weeks, had a colostomy bag for nine months and went through several stomach surgeries, all of which were tied to his addiction, the Times reported.

He was newly sober two years ago. Perry had said he had spent more than half his life in treatment centers or sober living facilities.

“I was a guy who wanted to become famous,” Perry told the Times in a 2002 interview. “There was steam coming out of my ears, I wanted to be famous so badly. You want the attention, you want the bucks and you want the best seat in the restaurant. I didn’t think what the repercussions would be.”

Perry appeared in more than 200 episodes in all 10 seasons of “Friends,” one of the main characters in a show that followed six young professionals who lived in Manhattan. Actors Jennifer Aniston, Lisa Kudrow, Courtney Cox, David Schwimmer and Matt LeBlanc starred alongside him.

Perry’s acting career began in 1979, when he appeared as a young child in the police show “240-Robert,” according to IMDb.

After “Friends,” he appeared in the 2011 ABC comedy “Mr. Sunshine,” and in a remake of “The Odd Couple,” which ran on CBS from 2015 to 2017, the Times reported.

Fans worldwide posted tributes on social media after his death.

More information

The National Institute on Drug Abuse has more on drug misuse and addiction.

SOURCE: New York Times

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