In a recent interview while promoting his new movie "The Boys in the Boat," George Clooney, aged 62, shared insights into his long-standing friendship with the late Matthew Perry. Their bond, dating back to when Perry was just 16, was formed and solidified during their concurrent stints on NBC's hit shows — ER for Clooney and Friends for Perry.
Clooney reminisced about the early days of their friendship, recalling how Perry, a decade his junior, was always humorous and full of life.
"He was a great, funny, funny, funny kid," Clooney told Deadline.Their connection was strengthened by shared aspirations and experiences in the entertainment industry, with Perry often expressing his longing for a regular role on a sitcom, a dream he believed would bring him ultimate happiness.
The Reality of Fame and Struggle with Addiction
Despite Perry achieving his dream with the unprecedented success of "Friends," Clooney observed that the fame and acclaim did not equate to happiness for Perry. Their close proximity on the Warner Brothers lot, where "ER" and "Friends" were filmed side by side, allowed Clooney to witness first-hand Perry's battle with addiction, a struggle the actor openly discussed throughout his life.
"We just knew that he wasn’t happy and I had no idea he was doing, what, 12 Vicodin a day and all the stuff he talked about, all that heartbreaking stuff," Clooney shared. This insight into Perry's life highlights the often-hidden challenges faced by those in the limelight, where success and wealth do not necessarily guarantee personal contentment.Perry's life, tragically cut short, was marked by his ongoing battle with substance abuse. According to the Los Angeles County Coroner's autopsy report obtained by PEOPLE, Perry's death was attributed to the acute effects of ketamine, with drowning, coronary artery disease, and buprenorphine effects noted as contributing factors.
The report also revealed that Perry had been practicing ketamine infusion therapy, with his last treatment occurring just a week and a half before his accidental drowning.