Matthew Perry was feeling “happy” and “proud” prior to his death last month, according to his close friend Lauren Graham.
Perry, best known for playing Chandler Bing on Friends, was found dead in his hot tub at his Los Angeles home on October 28. He was 54 years old. A private funeral service was held on November 3.
Speaking to CBS Mornings yesterday (November 16), Graham (Gilmore Girls) explained: “This last year, he was so proud of the book he wrote, and of how many people it touched.”
“It was a success that gave him a level of happiness that I hadn’t seen in him for a really long time, so that’s a nice memory.”
The actor was referring to Perry’s 2022 memoir Friends, Lovers, And The Big Terrible Thing, in which he wrote candidly about his addiction to drugs and alcohol, and his rise to global fame.
Graham, who met Perry when the pair were filming the comedy-drama Birds Of America (2008), went on to say that she was “still in shock” over Perry’s sudden and untimely death (via Deadline).
“I mean, it’s a really tragic loss, and he leaves his beautiful work behind,” she continued. “That’s something to be thankful for. And again, the book really meant something to him, so it was a really happy year for him.
“No one made me laugh as hard. Just tears, streaming. There was just such joy in being around him and being his friend.”
Perry included a photo of him and Graham together in his memoir, captioning it: “Me and the beautiful Lauren Graham.” He had previously called her “one of my favourite people”, adding: “We have great chemistry when working together and it’s fun to work with a close friend.”
This week, Perry’s Friends co-stars Courteney Cox, Jennifer Aniston, David Schwimmer, Matt LeBlanc and Lisa Kudrow shared touching individual tributes to the late actor on their respective Instagram pages.
Earlier this month, Friends co-creator Marta Kauffman said Perry was “happy” and “doing good in the world” before his passing.
“He seemed better than I had seen in a while. I was so thrilled to see that,” she explained. “He was emotionally in a good place. He looked good. He quit smoking.”
Kauffman continued: “Yes, he was sober. He learned things throughout this and what he learned more than anything is that he wants to help other addicts, and it gave him purpose.”
Perry’s official death certificate was released last week. According to reports, it stated that his cause of death was still “deferred” following inconclusive initial autopsy results. The toxicology report later confirmed that Perry’s death was not caused by a methamphetamine or fentanyl overdose.