'Friends' Star Matthew Perry Regrets Insulting Keanu Reeves in His Memoir


Apr. 24 2023, Updated 12:41 p.m. ET

(l-r): Keanu Reeves and Matthew Perry
Source: Getty Images

Few actors in Hollywood are more universally beloved than Keanu Reeves, who has been a movie star for decades but still seems remarkably grounded.

However, in a 2022 memoir called Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing, Matthew Perry took a couple of shots at the Speed actor that led some to wonder whether the Friends alum has something against him.

Article continues below advertisement

In general, the memoir chronicled Matthew's struggle with addiction, which is why those jabs seemed so bizarre.

Here's what the memoir said, and what happened after the part about Keanu made the rounds online.

matthew perry
Source: Getty Images
Article continues below advertisement

Why does Matthew Perry hate Keanu Reeves?

In his memoir, Matthew's first reference to Keanu came when he discussed the death of River Phoenix. River and Matthew had worked together on the 1988 film A Night in the Life of Jimmy Reardon, and in discussing River's death, Matthew seemed to suggest it should have been Keanu instead.

"Why is it that the original thinkers like River Phoenix and Heath Ledger die, but Keanu Reeves still walks among us?" he wrote in the book. "River was a beautiful man inside and out and too beautiful for this world, it turned out. It always seems to be the really talented guys who go down."

Article continues below advertisement

Later on in the memoir, Matthew called back to this moment in describing his reaction to learning the news that Chris Farley had died: "I punched a hole through Jennifer Aniston's dressing room wall when I found out," he wrote. "Keanu Reeves walks among us."

Article continues below advertisement

Matthew and Chris had worked together on the film Almost Heroes, and Matthew wrote as if he thinks that Chris and River had some sort of genius that Keanu lacks. They're pretty brutal remarks, but they do seem to be an honest reflection of what Matthew really thinks.

Matthew Perry apologized to Keanu Reeves after the backlash to his memoir excerpts.

In addition to Keanu's non-famous fans, celebrities like Rachel Zegler and Lynda Carter jumped to the Point Break actor's defense. On Twitter, Lynda compared Keanu to a "frozen cake," noting that "Nobody doesn't like him!"

Article continues below advertisement

Matthew clearly became aware of the backlash he received, because on Oct. 26, 2022, he released a statement apologizing to Keanu the following day. He expressed his remorse to Keanu and claimed he didn't intend to bash Keanu's life and career.

"I'm actually a big fan of Keanu," Matthew explained to People. "I just chose a random name, my mistake. I apologize. I should have used my own name instead."

Article continues below advertisement

Matthew Perry said he will remove Keanu Reeves's name from future editions of his memoir.

On April 22, 2023, at the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books, the 17 Again actor shared that he's pulling Keanu Reeves's name out of future editions of his memoir.

"I said a stupid thing. It was a mean thing to do," Matthew said, per the Los Angeles Times. "I pulled his name because I live on the same street ... I've apologized publicly to him. Any future versions of the book will not have his name in it."

Matthew noted that he hasn't apologized to Keanu in person, but "If I run into the guy, I'll apologize. It was just stupid."

More from Distractify

Latest Keanu Reeves News and Updates

    Opt-out of personalized ads

    © Copyright 2024 Distractify. Distractify is a registered trademark. All Rights Reserved. People may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website. Offers may be subject to change without notice.