The ''Friends'' star says he wants to stay with the show, even though he has other projects in the works
Although it was reported last week that the six ”Friends” cast members are now demanding $250,000 each per episode, Matthew Perry says, ”It’s not true.” While promoting his new movie, ”Three to Tango” (opening Oct. 22), Perry denied a published report that he and costars Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox Arquette, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, and David Schwimmer are asking to more than double their $100,000 per-episode contract, which expires at the end of this season.
Perry wouldn’t say how much the cast WILL be asking for to remain on TV’s No. 1 comedy — and when they’ll begin asking for it — but he allowed that he wants to stay a ”Friend” into the next millennium: ”I think creatively, we’re at the top of our game still. We’ve had a lot of fun this year with the apartment swapping. And we were really happy to hear that the lovely Elle Macpherson has joined the cast for a few episodes. I want it to keep going, and the cast really wants to stay together.”
Perry’s loyalty to the show doesn’t prevent him from pursuing other projects, however, including a television development deal with Warner Bros. His first show: a sitcom pilot for ABC currently titled ”The Shrink,” which Perry says is about a 30-year-old psychologist ”who’s convinced that he’s more screwed up than any of his patients.” He adds that being a writer doesn’t offer the same amount of perks as does being an actor in a top-rated sitcom. ”We go over to ABC and they make me wait for about 45 minutes. If I was there as an actor they’d let me right in. But now they say, ‘First-time writer guy? Let’s make him sit.”’
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