(NewsNation) — In an exclusive interview, Leslie Litt, casting director for the iconic TV show “Friends” and a close friend of the late Matthew Perry, opened up about her deep connection with the beloved actor.
Litt, who joined “NewsNation Prime,” couldn’t hide her emotions as she reminisced about her long-standing professional and personal relationship with Perry. Litt revealed a side of the actor that few had the privilege to see.
“I know Matthew in a very different way. I had a very personal relationship. And he was just a very, very incredibly giving, loving, beautiful-hearted person,” Litt said.
When Litt first met Perry, she said she saw his incredible talent, humor and charisma. She described her intuitive recognition of his unique qualities as a casting director, recognizing something special in him long before “Friends” made him a household name.
She shared a touching story about Perry’s unwavering support during a difficult time in her life when her daughter faced a life-threatening condition. Perry’s immediate offer to help and his continuous involvement in her foundation’s fundraisers left an indelible mark on Litt.
The annual fundraiser at the Beverly Hills Hotel, which Perry hosted for over a decade, significantly impacted countless children with special needs.
“I asked Matthew every year to host it. When the last scene of Friends was shot and everyone was on the floor hugging and crying, Matthew turned to me and said, ‘I know I won’t see you every day, but you don’t have to ask me anymore. I’m there for you, I will always host it,’” Litt shared.
Litt said that without his support, their mission would have been challenging.
Perry’s acting skills and unique portrayal of Chandler Bing made him a star. His sense of humor and the impact he had on pop culture, with widely recognized quotes and mannerisms from his character, are still celebrated and remembered to this day.
Litt acknowledged that Perry might have been surprised by the immense outpouring of love and tributes that followed his passing.
“I don’t know that he knew how loved he was. But he deserves it,” Litt said.
When asked about the vulnerability displayed in Perry’s memoir, Litt saw it as a gift to others facing similar struggles. She praised Perry’s willingness to open up about his darker experiences, showing that he cared deeply about helping others dealing with addiction and sobriety.
Litt found it challenging to single out one memory of Perry that made her smile, as there were so many, but she cherished the moments of being on set and watching his comedic genius in action.
“I’m very grateful for the time that we had,” Litt said of her relationship with Perry.