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Matthew Perry says David Schwimmer was crucial in helping all Friends stars get big pay rise

Matthew Perry says David Schwimmer was crucial in helping all Friends stars get big pay rise

He's also opened up about the addiction problems that have dogged his career in his new memoir, Friends, Lovers And The Big Terrible Thing.

Matthew Perry has explained how his Friends co-star David Schwimmer helped to ensure that the show became incredibly profitable for the cast.

The sitcom first aired back in 1994 and went on to become one of the biggest shows of all time, still gracing screens on a regular basis till this day.

In his new memoir, Friends, Lovers And The Big Terrible Thing, Perry is very open about the money he's made throughout his career, and he said the pilot for Friends earned him $22,500 (£19,614).

However, by the 10th and final season, they were making more than $1 million (£871,605) per episode, and Perry said Schwimmer's goodness and business sense was key in ensuring the show became 'extremely lucrative'.

According to Variety, the 53-year-old wrote: "David had certainly been in a position to go for the most money, and he didn’t. 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.

"We were making $1,100,040 (£958,800) an episode, and we were asking to do fewer episodes. Morons, all of us.

Perry said Schwimmer's business sense helped them all to get a big pay day.
LANDMARK MEDIA/Alamy Stock Photo

"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)."

Perry would go on to use a huge chunk of these earnings trying to overcome his drink and drug addictions.

Speaking to The New York Times, he said he was 18 months sober - but he has spent a hell of a lot of money getting to this point.

"I've probably spent $9 million (£7.9 million) or something trying to get sober," he said.

Speaking to People, Perry revealed that his alcoholism was just taking root when he landed the role that would change his life on the astronomically popular sitcom.

Over the years on the show, his addiction escalated - and in 2018, it nearly cost him his life.

While Perry publicly said that he had been hospitalised for a gastrointestinal perforation, the truth was that his colon had burst from using opioids.

Perry credited Schwimmer's 'goodness' for the financial position he and his Friends co-stars are all in today.
Album/Alamy Stock Photo

He was hospitalised for a total of five months, two weeks of which he was in a coma. Perry then had to wear a colostomy bag for nine months.

He said: "The doctors told my family that I had a two percent chance to live.

"I was put on a thing called an Ecmo machine, which does all the breathing for your heart and your lungs. And that's called a Hail Mary. No one survives that."

Featured Image Credit: REUTERS/Album/Alamy

Topics: Celebrity, Friends, Film and TV