“I love you, man.”
“Well, thanks, man.”
Matt LeBlanc on Tuesday wrote a heartfelt farewell to his longtime “Friends” scene partner Matthew Perry. Moments later, co-star Courteney Cox shared her own sentimental tribute as the former Mrs. Chandler Bing.
“Episodes” and “Friends” actor LeBlanc, who had released a joint statement with his iconic co-stars in the days after Perry’s late-October death, became the first “Friends” cast member to share a more personal note about his friend: the sarcastic and financially supportive Chandler Bing to his dim-witted but good-natured Joey Tribbiani.
“Matthew. It is with a heavy heart I say goodbye,” LeBlanc wrote on Instagram, alongside photos of scenes from their Emmy-winning NBC sitcom.
“The times we had together are honestly among the favorite times of my life,” he added. “It was an honor to share the stage with you and to call you my friend. I will always smile when I think of you and I’ll never forget you. Never. Spread your wings and fly brother you’re finally free. Much love. And I guess you’re keeping the 20 bucks you owe me.”
LeBlanc’s post featured images of him and Perry from when they played roommates in the series, including their apartment shenanigans and numerous hugs. Another showed a candid moment of the central cast hugging.
Hours later, Cox, who played high-strung Monica Geller in the series, also took to Instagram to say her piece. Cox’s Monica lived across the hall from Perry’s Chandler before their longtime friendship evolved into a secret romance, domestic partnership and finally marriage during the show’s 10-season run.
“I am so grateful for every moment I had with you Matty and I miss you every day,” the “Cougar Town” star wrote Tuesday while sharing a clip of one her most memorable scenes with him.
The clip came from the 1998 episode “The One With Ross’ Wedding,” the pivotal Season 4 finale that also revealed Chandler and Monica had slept together.
“When you work with someone as closely as I did with Matthew, there are thousands of moments I wish I could share. For now here’s one of my favorites,” she wrote of the big-reveal scene.
“To give a little backstory, Chandler and Monica were supposed to have a one night fling in London. But because of the audience’s reaction, it became the beginning of their love story,” she said. “In this scene, before we started rolling, he whispered a funny line for me to say. He often did things like that. He was funny and he was kind. 🤍🕊️”
Perry and his five co-stars shared the screen and entertained live-audience members in the hit sitcom from 1994 to 2004 and scored new generations of fans from syndication and streaming. As the wisecracking Chandler, Perry brought his signature sarcasm to a playful group of actors that quickly became one of TV’s most iconic ensemble casts.
The beloved “comedic genius,” who died at 54, was mourned by Hollywood and beyond, as well as by his castmates in a joint statement on Oct. 30. LeBlanc, Cox, Jennifer Aniston, Lisa Kudrow and David Schwimmer said that they were “all so utterly devastated by the loss.”
“We were more than just cast mates. We are a family,” they said. “There is so much to say, but right now we’re going to take a moment to grieve and process this unfathomable loss.”
The statement continued, “In time we will say more, as and when we are able. For now, our thoughts and our love are with Matty’s family, his friends, and everyone who loved him around the world.”
“Fools Rush In” and “The Odd Couple” star Perry, who was open about his struggles with addiction for years, was found unresponsive in a hot tub on Oct. 28 and was declared dead at the scene.
While officials say they are working to determine a cause of death, the investigation could take three to six months to complete, the Los Angeles County Medical Examiner said earlier this month. Foul play has been ruled out.
Times staff writer Alexandra Del Rosario contributed to this report.