Matthew Perry death: Beloved Friends Star, Passes Away at 54: Tributes from the World of Comedy

Matthew Perry, the actor best known for his role as Chandler Bing on the NBC sitcom Friends, died on October 28, 2023, at the age of 54. Tributes from fans and fellow cast members have been pouring in, praising Perry’s comedic genius and his impact on the world of television.

The actor was found dead at his home in Los Angeles, law enforcement sources told US media.

Friends, which followed the fortunes of six young friends living in New York City, aired from 1994 until 2004.

Its final episode was watched by 52.5 million in the US, making it the most watched TV episode of the 2000s.

The LA Times and TMZ, which first reported that Perry had died, said the actor was found unresponsive in a hot tub at his house.

A Los Angeles Fire Department spokesperson told the BBC that first responders went to an address in the Pacific Palisades area, regarding a “water emergency” of an unknown type, but did not name Perry.

Warner Bros, which produced the long-running show whose global reruns were loved by new generations of viewers, described Perry as a “true gift to us all”.

In 2016, he told BBC Radio 2 that he could not remember three years of filming during Friends, because of drink and drugs.

In an interview last year, he spoke about how he did not watch the show.

“I didn’t watch the show, and haven’t watched the show, because I could go, ‘Drinking, 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.

“But I think I’m going to start to watch it because it’s been an incredible thing to watch it touch the hearts of different generations.”

Perry experienced health problems including a burst colon in 2018 due to his drug usage, which required several operations.

In the show, Chandler was introduced as Ross Geller’s best friend since their college years, but he ended up sharing an apartment with actor Joey Tribbiani (centre)

He told BBC News Perry played an integral part in the success of Friends and was someone who was “at the hub of the wheel”.

“His character had the perfect combination of whit, but also true heart and it was grounded,” he said.

Perry also appeared in several films, including Fools Rush In, Almost Heroes and the Whole Nine Yards – but never found a screen project which came anywhere near matching the huge success and fame he found in Friends.

His later TV work, however, achieved some acclaim.