‘The One Where Our Hearts Are Broken’: Castmates, Show Creators Mourn Loss Of ‘Friends’ Actor Matthew Perry
WEST HOLLYWOOD, CA - AUGUST 10: Actor Matthew Perry arrives at CBS, CW And Showtime 2015 Summer TCA Party at Pacific Design Center on August 10, 2015 in West Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)

“Friends” actor Matthew Perry had died on Saturday at the age of 54, and shortly after the news broke of his passing, tributes began to pour in from his former castmates and the iconic show’s co-creators.

Perry spent much of 2022 doing interviews about his memoir, “Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing,” and the decades-long battle with addiction that had almost killed him. On several occasions, he said that he’d like to be remembered more for what he did to help others — particularly those battling addictions in the same way that he was — than for his work as an actor. And according to many who worked with him, although they praised his talent and abilities, it was his generosity and kindness that set him apart.

“What a loss.The world will miss you Matthew Perry . 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,” Maggie Wheeler (Janice) posted.

Paget Brewster (Kathy) added, “He was lovely to me on Friends and every time I saw him in the decades after. Please read his book. It was his legacy to help. He won’t rest in peace though … He’s already too busy making everyone laugh up there.”

Brooke Shields, who played Joey’s (Matt LeBlanc) soap-opera-obsessed stalker in one episode, remembered Perry fondly as well. “Really struggling to find the words. You were so loved, Matthew. I loved you dearly. Thank you for the belly laughs. You brought joy to so many. We already miss you … sending all of my love to your family and friends.”

I’m heartbroken about the untimely death of my ‘son,’ Matthew Perry,” said ctress Morgan Fairchild, who played romance novelist Nora Tyler Bing – mother to Perry’s Chandler. “The loss of such a brilliant young actor is a shock. And such a sweet, caring man, too! I’m sending love and condolences to his friends and family, especially his dad, John Bennett Perry, who I worked with on Falcon Crest & Flamingo Rd. Lovely family and such a heavy loss!”

Kathleen Turner, who played Chandler’s drag queen father, Helena Handbasket, remembered Perry as a kind man with “a good sense of humor and a good heart.”

“He came to see one of my Broadway shows and he came backstage. When he saw me, he yelled out, ‘Hey dad’ and everyone thought it was pretty cool,” Turner told People Magazine. “I am still constantly recognized by a certain age group as Chandler’s dad. I met somebody last night and she said, ‘Aren’t you a movie star?’ I said, ‘Yeah, but before your time.’ And she said, ‘Well, where would I know you from?’ and I said, ‘Chandler’s dad.’ She said, ‘Oh, my God!'”

The show’s c0-creators David Crane and Marta Kauffman — along with executive producer Kevin Bright — added a statement as well, saying in part, “We will always cherish the joy, the light, the blinding intelligence he brought to every moment—not just to his work, but in life as well. He was always the funniest person in the room. More than that, he was the sweetest, with a giving and selfless heart.”

“This truly is The One Where Our Hearts Are Broken.”

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