In his memoir, “Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing,” published in 2022, Perry says that he begged his agents to get him a role in “Friends Like Us,” but was told that it wasn’t going to happen: “You’re attached to the baggage handlers show. They’ve already measured you for the futuristic shirt and everything.”
Perry was devastated. The “L.A.X. 2194” pilot was “terrible” and “Friends Like Us” was perfect. “It was as if someone had followed me around for a year, stealing my jokes, copying my mannerisms, photocopying my world-weary yet witty view of life,” Perry explained. “It wasn’t that I thought I could play ‘Chandler,’ I was Chandler.”
Fortunately, the pilot he’d already signed up for was so terrible that it failed to get picked up, which freed Perry up for “Friends.” He knew the pilot’s script so well by that point that he didn’t even need to bring the pages into his audition. He nailed the role of Chandler, and the rest is history.