Matthew Perry’s cause of death inconclusive pending toxicology tests

Matthew Perry’s autopsy is complete, the Los Angeles County medical examiner’s office has confirmed.

The Friends star’s cause of death has been listed as “deferred” on the coroner’s website as it awaits a toxicology report, which can take weeks.

“In cases where the cause of death cannot be determined at the time of autopsy, a deferred certificate will be issued until additional studies have been completed,” the LA coroner’s guidelines state.

The news comes as fans, co-stars and family members pay tribute to the comedic actor, known for his sarcastic Friends character Chandler Bing, who died at his home in LA on Saturday (28 October). He was 54.

NBC News previously reported that the American-Canadian star died in an apparent drowning after being found in his jacuzzi, according to his representative.

“We are heartbroken by the tragic loss of our beloved son and brother,” his family said. “Matthew brought so much joy to the world, both as an actor and a friend. You all meant so much to him and we appreciate the tremendous outpouring of love.”

Matthew Perry played Chandler Bing in all 10 seasons of ‘Friends’ on NBC from 1994 to 2004 (PA)
Matthew Perry played Chandler Bing in all 10 seasons of ‘Friends’ on NBC from 1994 to 2004 (PA)

Perry played sarcastic self-sabotager Chandler in all 10 seasons of Friends on NBC from 1994 to 2004, with the show catapulting him and the rest of the young cast – Jennifer Aniston, David Schwimmer, Matt LeBlanc, Lisa Kudrow and Courteney Cox – to global fame.

His co-stars of a decade are yet to comment on the news; however, a joint statement from the stars is expected soon.

Morgan Fairchild, who played Chandler’s mother, Nora Bing, said: “I’m heartbroken about the untimely death of my ‘son’ … The loss of such a brilliant young actor is a shock.”

Maggie Wheeler, who played Chandler’s oblivious love interest Janice, shared a picture of them on Instagram with the caption: “What a loss. The world will miss you Matthew Perry. The joy you brought to so many in your too short lifetime will live on. I feel so very blessed by every creative moment we shared.”

Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau, who was a friend of Perry’s at school, called the star’s death “shocking and saddening”. He wrote: “I’ll never forget the schoolyard games we used to play, and I know people around the world are never going to forget the joy he brought them. Thanks for all the laughs, Matthew. You were loved – and you will be missed.”

Selma Blair, Paget Brewster, Octavia Spencer and Yvette Nicole Brown also shared condolence messages.

Matthew Perry and ex-girlfriend Julia Roberts (Friends)
Matthew Perry and ex-girlfriend Julia Roberts (Friends)

In New York City, Friends fans have flocked to the iconic Manhattan apartment where the series was filmed to pay their respects.

Perry will also be remembered for his work helping recovering drug addicts. The actor was open about his own journey to sobriety, writing candidly about his substance abuse in his affecting 2022 memoir, Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing.

In 2013, he opened Perry House in Malibu, California, with addiction specialist Earl Hightower, offering rehabilitation programmes in his former home.

“The best thing about me, bar none, is that if an alcoholic or drug addict comes up to me and says, ‘Will you help me?’ I can say yes and follow up and do it,” he wrote in his memoir.

While Perry never enjoyed more success than when appearing in Friends, he appeared in other small-screen credits, such as Boys Will Be Boys, Growing Pains, Beverly Hills 90210, The West Wing, Scrubs and The Odd Couple. He also appeared in films including Fools Rush In, The Kid and 17 Again.

He had been on a hiatus from acting since 2017.