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Matthew Perry revealed how he wished to be remembered a 12 months earlier than dying

‘Once I die, I don’t need Mates to be the very first thing that’s talked about,’ TV star final 12 months throughout Toronto look

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Matthew Perry may need been one of the vital well-known tv stars due to his position on Mates. However the actor wished to be remembered as somebody who “lived properly” and was an advocate for folks affected by drug and alcohol dependancy.

Perry, who died final weekend at age 54, was requested final 12 months what he wished his legacy to be when he appeared on the Q With Tom Energy podcast to advertise his memoir, Mates, Lovers and the Massive Horrible Factor.

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“I wish to be remembered as any person who lived properly, beloved properly, was a seeker,” Perry replied throughout an onstage dialog on the Scorching Docs Ted Rogers Cinema in Toronto final November. “And his paramount factor is that he desires to assist folks. That’s what I would like.”

In his 2022 memoir, Mates, Lovers and the Massive Horrible Factor, Perry wrote about his time on the present on the top of which he and his co-stars earned $1 million per episode and mentioned the position was one he was born to play.

“It was as if somebody had adopted me round for a 12 months, stealing my jokes, copying my mannerisms, photocopying my world-weary but witty view of life. One character specifically stood out to me: it wasn’t that I assumed I may ‘play’ Chandler. I ‘was’ Chandler,” he wrote in his memoir.

However behind the scenes, Perry struggled with drug and alcohol dependancy, a battle that started when he was simply a teen. He instructed the BBC radio 2 in 2016 that he didn’t bear in mind filming seasons 3 by 6 of Mates. At one level he was consuming 55 Vicodin tablets a day and washing it down with 1 / 4 bottle of vodka.

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“You’ll be able to observe the trajectory of my dependancy should you gauge my weight from season to season once I’m carrying weight, it’s alcohol; once I’m skinny, it’s tablets. When I’ve a goatee, it’s plenty of tablets,” he wrote.

At one level his co-star Jennifer Aniston confronted him about his consuming within the midst of filming episodes.

“I ought to have been the toast of the city, however I used to be in a darkish room assembly with nothing however drug sellers and fully alone,” Perry mentioned in an October 2022 interview with Diane Sawyer.

He mentioned his castmates had been supportive of him throughout his dependancy struggles, with Aniston persevering with to examine in on him years after the present’s collection finale aired in 2004.

“(They) had been understanding, they usually had been affected person,” he recalled in an interview final 12 months with PEOPLE. “It’s like penguins. Penguins, in nature, when one is sick, or when one may be very injured, the opposite penguins encompass it and prop it up. They stroll round it till that penguin can stroll by itself. That’s form of what the forged did for me.”

Friends: The Reunion
Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Matthew Perry, Lisa Kudrow, David Schwimmer and Matt LeBlanc throughout the extremely hyped “Mates: The Reunion” particular. Photograph by Terence Patrick /HBO Max

Nonetheless, the cycle of abuse continued lengthy after the present ended and resulted in Perry’s colon exploding in 2018.

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“The docs instructed my household that I had a 2% probability to dwell,” he recalled in an interview with PEOPLE. “I used to be placed on a factor known as an ECMO machine, which does all of the respiratory in your coronary heart and your lungs. And that’s known as a Hail Mary. Nobody survives that.”

After rising from a coma, Perry who additionally starred for 3 seasons on a reboot of The Odd Couple and several other different short-lived collection after Mates ended needed to put on a colostomy bag for practically a 12 months afterwards.

“My therapist mentioned, ‘The following time you concentrate on taking OxyContin, simply take into consideration having a colostomy bag for the remainder of your life,’” Perry instructed PEOPLE. “And a bit of window opened, and I crawled by it, and I now not need OxyContin.”

In 2020, Web page Six reported that Perry skirted dying once more when the actor’s coronary heart stopped for 5 minutes after docs administered propofol that interacted badly with the hydrocodone in his system.

“I’ve in all probability spent $9 million or one thing attempting to get sober,” he instructed the New York Instances of his battle to get clear.

However with the discharge of his e book final fall, Perry had turned the web page. Following his dying final weekend, buddies spoke about how he was in “good spirits” and he had reportedly booked a brand new position in an upcoming drama.

“The most effective factor about me, bar none, is that if any person involves me and says, ‘I can’t cease consuming, are you able to assist me?’ I can say ‘Sure’ and comply with up and do it,” Perry instructed Energy final 12 months. “Once I die, I don’t need Mates to be the very first thing that’s talked about. I would like that to be the very first thing that’s talked about. And I’m gonna dwell the remainder of my life proving that.”

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It was a sentiment he echoed in considered one of his last conversations with PEOPLE when he instructed the journal that a few of his finest traits are “caring about others, for by no means giving up. Serving to folks as a lot as I do.”

“That’s in all probability my favourite factor about myself,” he mentioned. “Being artistic, seeing, studying that should you’re uncomfortable or feeling anxiousness, one of many methods to get out of that state of affairs is to be artistic.”

Perry mentioned he hoped his memoir could possibly be of assist to others scuffling with dependancy points in their very own lives.

“I needed to wait till I used to be fairly safely sober — and away from the energetic illness of alcoholism and dependancy — to jot down all of it down. I used to be fairly sure that it could assist folks if I did.”

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