Matthew Perry Fell Asleep on ‘Friends’ Set but Matt LeBlanc Woke Him up



  • Matthew Perry said he once fell asleep while shooting a coffee shop scene in “Friends.”
  • The actor, who was struggling with addiction, said Matt LeBlanc woke him before anyone noticed.
  • The anecdote is shared by Perry in his upcoming memoir “Friends, Lovers and the Big Terrible Thing.”

In the depths of his addiction, Matthew Perry said he once fell asleep midway through a scene in “Friends,” but was saved by Matt LeBlanc.

Perry, 53, opens up about the toll his addiction to opioids and alcohol took on his body and career in his upcoming memoir “Friends, Lovers and the Big Terrible Thing,” slated for a November 1 release. Insider previously reported that the actor revealed how his struggle nearly became fatal after his colon burst from opioid use when he was 49. 

However, according to an excerpt from his book published by The Sunday Times, his battle with addiction began decades before and overlapped with his time on “Friends.”

Perry played the character of Chandler Bing on the NBC sitcom throughout its 10-season run. Despite being “determined” not to let his addiction impact his work on the show or his castmates, Perry admitted that he once fell asleep filming a scene in Central Perk. 

“The addiction ravaged me — one time, in a scene in the coffeehouse when I’m dressed in a suit, I fell asleep right there on the couch,” he wrote. “Disaster was averted only when Matt LeBlanc nudged me awake right before my line; no one noticed, but I knew how close I’d come.”

Matt LeBlanc and Matthew Perry on April 30, 2016 in London, England.

Matt LeBlanc and Matthew Perry in London in April 2016.

Dave Benett/Getty Images



LeBlanc, 55, played Perry’s character’s friend and roommate, Joey Tribbiani. 

At the time, Perry says he was taking up to 55 pills a day of Vicodin, the brand name for a painkiller that combines the opiate hydrocodone with the over-the-counter pain reliever acetaminophen, Healthline reported.

It wouldn’t be the last time his castmates would either knowingly or unknowingly support Perry through his struggle. 

In the same excerpt, Perry said Jennifer Aniston, who played Rachel Green on the show, confronted him about his drinking at one point, telling him that people could “smell it” on him.

“To be confronted by Jennifer Aniston was devastating,” he wrote.

Perry touched on the interaction during an interview with Diane Sawyer for ABC and said he was “grateful” for Aniston speaking out to him despite it being a “scary” moment. 

“She was the one who reached out the most,” Perry said of Aniston, 53, who he referred to in the interview as “Jenny.” “I’m really grateful to her for that,” he added. 



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