Matthew Perry Wanted to Be Remembered for Helping Others Get Sober Instead of Just ‘Friends’: ‘I’m Gonna Live the Rest of My Life Proving That’

Matthew Perry discussed what he wanted to be remembered for most during an interview that occurred a year before his death. The actor died Saturday at age 54.

Perry spoke publicly about his legacy on the “Q With Tom Power” podcast in 2022 while promoting his memoir “Friends, Lovers and the Big Terrible Thing.”

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“I would like to be remembered as somebody who lived well, loved well, was a seeker,” Perry said. “And his paramount thing is that he wants to help people. That’s what I want.”

Perry had been outspoken about his alcohol and drug abuse issues in his career. In 1997, after a jet ski accident, he became addicted to Vicodin and went to rehab in 2001. He later turned his former Malibu home into a sober living facility called the Perry House, which ran until 2015. In 2021, Perry declared that he was sober and estimated that he spent $9 million on his road to sobriety.

“The best thing about me, bar none, is that if somebody comes to me and says, ‘I can’t stop drinking, can you help me?’ I can say ‘yes’ and follow up and do it,” Perry said. “When I die, I don’t want ‘Friends’ to be the first thing that’s mentioned. I want that to be the first thing that’s mentioned. And I’m gonna live the rest of my life proving that.”

Perry gained international recognition for his role as Chandler Bing on “Friends,” starring alongside Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, David Schwimmer and Matt LeBlanc.

During his “Q With Tom Power” podcast appearance, Perry explained why he couldn’t bring himself to watch the beloved sitcom, which ran for 10 seasons from 1994 to 2004.

“I didn’t watch the show, and haven’t watched the show, because I could go drinking … opiates … drinking … cocaine,” he said, referring to the stages he was at in his drug and alcohol addiction while working on the series. “Like I could tell season by season by how I looked.”

However, Perry then revealed he was considering watching “Friends” because not only was it an “incredible ride” for the actor, but it was also an “incredible thing to watch it touch the hearts of different generations.”

“It’s become this important, significant thing and I, you know, I would watch that again,” Perry said. “It was really funny, and all the people were nice.”

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