If there is one thing we have learned about Jennifer Aniston over the last few years it is that everyone needs a friend like her. Matthew Perry, who sadly passed away on Saturday, continually heaped praise on the Rachel actress, and it's safe to say the feeling was mutual.
From stealing his heart to being there in his darkest days, Jennifer, who is affectionately referred to by Matthew as 'Jenny' in his memoir Friends, Lovers and the Big Terrible Thing, was a stalwart in her devotion to her close friend.
Keep scrolling to see all the details of their close relationship…
Confronting him about his addiction issues
One of the most important qualities in a friend is knowing you can rely on them to be honest, and give you a reality check when you really need it. Jennifer did exactly that when she confronted Matthew on the set of Friends during its final season.
"We know you're drinking," were the four words she uttered to the actor in between scenes in his trailer. Recalling the moment in his memoir, he added: "'We can smell it,' she said, in a kind of weird but loving way, and the plural 'we' hit me like a sledgehammer".
In 2022, Matthew went into further detail about how much Jennifer was there for him in an interview with Diane Sawyer. "She was the one that reached out the most, you know, I’m really grateful to her for that.
After recalling the conversation in his trailer, added: "Yeah, imagine how scary a moment that was, I should have been the toast of the town, but I was in a dark room meeting with nothing but drug dealers and completely alone."
Jennifer's genuine concern, par for her friend was always clear, in fact, in a 2004 interview with Diane, Jennifer broke down in tears about her co-star. See the heartbreaking moment in the video below.
Diane asked the actress what each of her co-stars needed to hear, and while Jennifer provided joyful advice to her pals when it came to Matthew, she was nearly left speechless.
In between tears, she said: "'We didn't know. We, you know, we weren't equipped, we weren't - to deal with it. You know, nobody had ever dealt with that and, you know, the idea of even losing him. He's having a rough road, but he is alright."
What has Jennifer said about Matthew?
The world couldn't have been more overjoyed when the Friends cast reunited on for the show's 25th anniversary in 2021. During the special episode, which was titled The One Where They Get Back Together, Matthew shocked his fellow cast mates when he opened up about his anxiety around being funny. He revealed: "I felt like I was gonna die if they didn't laugh,"
"And it's not healthy for sure, but I would sometimes say a line and they wouldn't laugh and I would sweat and just go into convulsions if I didn't get the laugh I was supposed to get. I would freak out."
In 2022, in an interview with ABC's Diane Sawyer, Jennifer reacted to the revelation, telling her: "I didn't understand the level of anxiety and self-torture [that] was put on Matthew Perry, if he didn't get that laugh and the devastation that he felt."
The Marley and Me actress, as she'd previously spoken about his sensitivity. She told Oprah back in 2003, "[Matthew is] probably one of the most sensitive people as well as being funny and a genius."
Matthew's soft spot for Jennifer
Their decades-long friendship was certainly something special, but Matthew's affection for Jennifer was always incredibly strong and he even revealed he had a crush on her after they first met prior to Friends.
"I was immediately taken by her (how could I not be?) and liked her, and I got the sense she was intrigued, too – maybe it was going to be something," he wrote in his memoir.
"Back then I got two jobs in one day – one was Haywire, an America's Funniest Home Videos-type show, and the other was a sitcom. So I called Jennifer and I said, 'You're the first person I wanted to tell this to!'
"Looking back, it was clear that this made her think I liked her too much or in the wrong kind of way… and I only compounded the error by then asking her out.
"She declined (which made it very difficult to actually go out with her), but said that she'd love to be friends with me, and I compounded the compound by blurting, 'We can't be friends!'"
"Fairly early in the making of Friends I realised that I was still crushing badly on Jennifer Aniston," he explained. "Our hellos and goodbyes became awkward. And then I'd ask myself, 'How long can I look at her? Is three seconds too long?'"
"I never said it and I hid it, you know, the crush. But, then she married Brad Pitt and I was like, 'I don't think I have a chance here," he said.
Despite his romantic feelings never being reciprocated by the actress, it created the foundation for their incredibly close friendship. At the end of the memoir, when listing his friends, his affection fort Jennifer was showcased yet again. When naming his co-stars, he referred to all of them by name, but Jennifer was affectionately referred to as Jenny.