Matthew Perry, best known as the quirky sarcastic character Chandler Bing from the 90s sitcom Friends, is doing everything he can to retract his controversial comments on actor Keanu Reeves from his recently published autobiography, Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing.
Back in October, Perry released his memoir which discussed and dissected his early struggles with substance abuse and how his TV fame had affected that part of his life. In the book, he wrote about his close relationship with the late River Phoenix and the grief he feels about the unfortunate trend of talented young actors and entertainers passing away far too soon.
“River was a beautiful man, inside and out – too beautiful for this world, it turned out,” he wrote. “It always seems to be the really talented guys who go down. Why is it that the original thinkers like River Phoenix and Heath Ledger die, but Keanu Reeves still walks among us?”
Although it was intended as a joke with Keanu’s name being picked at “random”, many readers criticized Perry and called him insensitive and offensive for his remarks.
He immediately apologized, stating he was “a big fan” of Reeves, adding, “I should have used my own name instead.”
Fast forward six months to this past Saturday, Perry appeared at the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books where he shared he’d be removing the comments made about Reeves from future editions of the book.
“I said a stupid thing. It was a mean thing to do,” he admitted. “I pulled his name because I live on the same street. I’ve apologized publicly to him. Any future versions of the book will not have his name in it.”
Having yet the chance to apologize in person to the John Wick star, he explained, “If I run into the guy, I’ll apologize. It was just stupid.”
Talking at the convention, he also addressed additional controversies which involved the backlash against his breakthrough TV show Friends and its lack of diversity.
“It was a different time. Nobody talked about diversity,” he stated, adding, “we were all stupid. Diversity is a huge issue. It’s the right thing to do.”
Reeves has yet to comment on Perry’s remarks, but a source previously told US Weekly that “Keanu thought the comments came out of left field.”
But sharing a mutual friendship in River Phoenix, it seems Matthew is telling the truth in that he never meant for his comments about Keanu to be insulting or in any way an attempt to criticize his talent as an actor. Hopefully this latest act of Perry can earn him forgiveness from readers, as I’m sure Keanu has long since forgiven him.