Matthew Perry, 53, revealed the true salaries he and his Friends co-stars made over the years, in his new memoir, Friends, Lovers, & the Big Terrible Thing, which was released on Tuesday. The actor, who played Chandler for ten years on the popular sitcom, which premiered in 1994, claimed he earned $22,500 for the pilot episode and it increased to over $1 million per episodes for the cast by the series end, according to Variety. He also reportedly claimed that his former castmate, David Schwimmer, is the one who helped with the increase by not asking for more money for himself.
“It was a decision that proved to be extremely lucrative down the line. David had certainly been in a position to go for the most money, and he didn’t,” Matthew wrote, the outlet reported. “I would like to think that I would have made the same move, but as a greedy twenty-five-year-old, I’m not sure I would have. But his decision served to make us take care of each other through what turned out to be a myriad of stressful network negotiations, and it gave us a tremendous amount of power.”
“By season eight, we were making a million dollars per episode; by season ten we were making even more,” he continued. “We were making $1,100,040 an episode, and we were asking to do fewer episodes. Morons, all of us. We had David’s goodness, and his astute business sense, to thank for what we had been offered.”
“I owe you about $30 million, David. (We were still morons),” he cheekily added. Matthew also reportedly talked about the salaries he made for some of his films. They included $1 million for the romantic comedy, Fools Rush In, and $2 million for the 1998 comedy, Almost Heroes.
He also reportedly touched on some of the offers he received for other television shows. He was apparently initially offered $50,000 an episode for his role in the 2006 series, Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip, but his team was able to increase his rate to $175,000. He also reportedly revealed his Friends co-star, Matt LeBlanc was making $600,000 an episode for the Friends spinoff series, Joey.
Other topics Matthew reportedly goes into detail about in his book include his years-long battle with drugs and alcohol, a drunken sex failure as a teen, and how he once allegedly “beat up” Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as a kid after his mom started working for Justin’s father, Pierre Trudeau, who was the Prime Minister of Canada at the time. On the day of the release, Matthew took to Instagram to share a video about the book and revealed how “excited” he was for people to read it, in the caption.
“Today is the day! #FriendsLoversBook is finally here. I’m so excited that I finally get to share my story with you! It has been a meaningful experience for me and I hope you find some meaning in it too. To purchase a copy today, head to the link in my bio,” the caption read.