Friends star Matthew Perry found dead at age 54

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Matthew Perry, star of the hit US comedy series Friends, has been found dead at his Los Angeles home aged 54.

One of the most familiar faces on television during the ten series of Friends died after an apparent drowning, according to the Los Angeles Times and celebrity website TMZ.

In a statement Warner Bros, which made Friends, said: “Matthew was an incredibly gifted actor and an indelible part of the Warner Bros Television Group family.

“The impact of his comedic genius was felt around the world, and his legacy will live on in the hearts of so many.

“This is a heartbreaking day, and we send our love to his family, his loved ones, and all of his devoted fans.”

A Los Angeles police officer told the Associated Press they had been called to the actor’s home address for “a death investigation of a male in his 50s”.

Perry was nominated for an Emmy for his role as Chandler Bing in Friends, which ran from 1994 to 2004.

He joined his co-stars Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Matt LeBlanc, Lisa Kudrow and David Schwimmer for a reunion special hosted by James Corden in 2021.

During his time on the show, he struggled with addiction and anxiety which he described in his memoir Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing which was published in 2022.

“I loved everything about the show but I was struggling with my addictions which only added to my sense of shame,” he wrote. “If I didn’t get the laugh I was supposed to get I would freak out.

“I felt that every single night. This pressure left me in a bad place. I also knew of the six people making that show, only one of them was sick.”

He garnered two more Emmy nominations for his appearances as associate White House Counsel Joe Quincy in The West Wing.

His TV work also included the short-lived Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip – written by West Wing creator Aaron Sorkin – while he starred in several films, including Fools Rush In opposite Selma Hayek and his father John – who also appeared in one episode of Friends – 17 Again and The Whole Nine Yards alongside Bruce Willis.

NBC, which aired the programme, tweeted: “He brought so much joy to hundreds of millions of people around the world with his pitch perfect comedic timing and wry wit. His legacy will live on through countless generations.”

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