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‘Friends’ Star Matthew Perry passed away at 54 

The passing of Matthew Perry, renowned for his portrayal of the humorous Chandler Bing in the beloved sitcom ‘Friends,’ has left fans and prominent figures worldwide deeply shocked and saddened. The actor, aged 54, was discovered lifeless in his Los Angeles residence on Saturday, October 28.

Authorities responded to his home around 4 p.m. and found him unresponsive. Sources, speaking on condition of anonymity due to the ongoing investigation, refrained from specifying the cause of death. Although no illicit substances were found at the scene, sources mentioned the discovery of prescription medications at his residence, prompting a need for toxicology analysis as part of the investigation. Up to this point, a representative for Perry has not provided a response to The Times’ request for comment.

Los Angeles Police Capt. Scot Williams, who oversees the Robbery Homicide Division handling Perry’s case, has indicated that determining the precise cause of death may take some time.

Matthew Perry, the son of actor John Bennett Perry and Suzanne Marie Langford, who once served as the press secretary for Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, was born in 1969. Following his parents’ separation when he was just one year old, Perry spent his formative years split between Canada and Los Angeles.

His journey in the entertainment industry began as a child actor, securing guest roles on television shows like “Charles in Charge” and “Beverly Hills 90210.” He also had the opportunity to act alongside River Phoenix in the movie “A Night in the Life of Jimmy Reardon” during the 1980s and early 1990s.

However, his major breakthrough came with his casting in “Friends,” originally titled “Friends Like Us.” This iconic sitcom, which premiered on NBC in 1994, revolved around the lives of six single New Yorkers navigating the complexities of adulthood.

The show rapidly evolved into a cultural phenomenon and served as the cornerstone of NBC’s revered Thursday-night “Must-See TV” lineup. It catapulted Matthew Perry, along with his co-stars Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, and David Schwimmer, to instant mega-stardom. At its zenith, notably with a 1996 Super Bowl episode and the series finale in 2004, “Friends” attracted more than 50 million live viewers. Towards the end of the series, cast members were earning in excess of $1 million per episode.

Matthew Perry soon found himself alongside prominent stars like Julia Roberts and featured in notable films, including the 1997 romantic comedy “Fools Rush In,” where he starred opposite Salma Hayek, and the 2000 ensemble mob comedy “The Whole Nine Yards,” alongside Bruce Willis.

However, beneath the surface of one of television’s most beloved comedic talents, there existed a darker aspect to his life. In his 2022 memoir, titled “Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing,” Perry candidly shared his lifelong battle with addiction, particularly to alcohol and opioids. He revealed that he had his initial encounter with alcohol at the age of 14 but didn’t fully comprehend the signs of alcoholism until he reached the age of 21. Subsequently, he estimated that he had expended over $7 million in attempts to achieve sobriety, which included multiple stays in rehabilitation facilities.

Perry’s struggles with substance abuse also resulted in severe health complications, including a five-month hospitalisation in 2018 due to a colon rupture. According to his account, this incident left him with just a 2% chance of surviving the night.

Maggie Wheeler, known for her role as Janice, the on-again, off-again girlfriend of Matthew Perry’s character on the acclaimed show “Friends,” offered a heartfelt tribute on Instagram. She expressed her sentiments with the following words: “What a loss. The world will miss you Mathew Perry,” she wrote. “The joy you brought to so many in your too short lifetime will live on. I feel so very blessed by every creative moment we shared.”


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