“We are all so utterly devastated by the loss of Matthew. We were more than just cast mates. We are a family,” Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, David Schwimmer, Matt LeBlanc, and Lisa Kudrow wrote, via People. “There is so much to say, but right now we’re going to take a moment to grieve and process this unfathomable loss.”
The cast continued, “In time we will say more, as and when we are able. For now, our thoughts and our love are with Matty’s family, his friends, and everyone who loved him around the world.”
Friends co-creators Marta Kauffman and David Crane, as well as executive producer Kevin Bright, also honored Perry, who was found dead in his hot tub after an apparent drowning. “It still seems impossible,” the trio wrote, noting that they were “shocked and deeply, deeply saddened.” “All we can say is that we feel blessed to have had him as part of our lives.”
Kauffman, Crane, and Bright added, “He was a brilliant talent. It’s a cliche to say that an actor makes a role their own, but in Matthew’s case, there are no truer words. From the day we first heard him embody the role of Chandler Bing, there was no one else for us.”
“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,” the three said in their statement. “He was always the funniest person in the room. More than that, he was the sweetest, with a giving and selfless heart. We send all of our love to his family and friends.” Their statement ends, “This truly is The One Where Our Hearts Are Broken.”
Tributes have poured in for Perry, who portrayed the lovable mess Chandler Bing on Friends from 1994 to 2004. Much like his character, Perry was self-effacing and brutally honest, most notably about his struggles with addiction. Hank Azaria called him a “brother,” and thanked him for helping him get sober.