Friends: How one of its protagonists almost missed the opportunity of a lifetime


The fact that all 10 seasons of Friends were successfully broadcast in the 1990s and after more than 17 years since its last episode aired, has by no means extinguished its popularity and the impressive fan base that is being added as they discover its repetitions on the different platforms and television channels.

Since its debut in 1994, it launched its young protagonists Jennifer Aniston (Rachel), Courtney Cox (Monica), Lisa Kudrow (Phoebe), Matt LeBlanc (Joey), Matthew Perry (Chandler) and David Schwimmer (Ross) to fame. ), who entered the cast without being sure of what would happen.

After the long-awaited reunion that the series held in May 2021 entitled Friends: The Reunion on HBO, on the 17th anniversary of the broadcast of its final episode, nostalgia, memories and anecdotes have invaded fans of the famous Program. Some forgotten aspects not only of the series but of those who participated in it resurfaced, as is the case of Matthew Perry who gave life to the funny Chandler Bing.

One of the data that resurfaced refers to the beginning of the show, when its producers were in the process of casting to form the cast that would star in the iconic program for the NBC network. That’s when the creators of Friends chose Mathew Perry, who at that time had another project in his sights without imagining how close he came to losing what ended up becoming the most important opportunity of his life.

Currently 52 years old, Mather Perry is considered the member of the group that has suffered the most ups and downs both in his career and in his personal life since he jumped into the headlines thanks to his role as Chandler Bing. However, nothing that has happened to him behind the scenes during his participation in Friends and after it ended has diminished the affection of his fans for more than 28 years.

By the beginning of the 1990s, Matthew, at the age of 21, was gradually getting his artistic career on track, by then he made a special appearance in the award-winning Beverly Hills, 90210 as Roger Azarian, while at the same time he had spent a year as series regular and starring cast member on the 1990 CBS series Sydney, playing Billy Kells, the younger brother of actress Valerie Bertinelli’s character.

When the opportunity came to be part of the main cast of Friends, Perry had already managed to do another leading role in 1993 that only lasted 13 episodes, with the character Matt Bailey in the program Home Free for ABC. It was at that moment that the actor was about to let go of the role of Chandler when he agreed to record the pilot episode of the series LAX 2194, in which he had promised to play a baggage handler at the airport. from LAX in the year 2194.

In several interviews, Perry has referred that at first participating in that series sounded like a very good opportunity, but luckily for him, the project began to suffer several delays to become a reality. That is why the actor decided to get involved in another production as a backup so as not to be left without working, so he agreed to do the pilot of the Six of One series as a backup, which would later be known as Friends.