EntertainmentRemembering Matthew Perry: Beyond being Chandler, his best role revealed

Remembering Matthew Perry: Beyond being Chandler, his best role revealed

Matthew Perry and Salma Hayek in a charming romantic comedy.
Matthew Perry and Salma Hayek in a charming romantic comedy.
Images source: © Getty Images | Columbia Pictures

6:04 AM EST, November 7, 2023

Since the recent passing of Matthew Perry, there has been a resurgence of intrigue into his personal life and professional career. The gone-too-soon star once revealed his favourite role, and no, it wasn't Chandler Bing from "Friends".

In his autobiography, "Friends, Lovers, and that Big Bad Thing," published last year, Perry highlighted the romantic comedy "Fools Rush In" directed by Andy Tennant as his finest piece of work. The film, which generated over 40 million dollars worldwide, received mediocre reviews from both critics and audiences.

Unveiling "Fools Rush In"

"Fools Rush In" originated from the 1997 romance proverb "fools rush in where angels fear to tread". The screenplay written by Katherine Reback is simple. It charts the tale of an architect named Alex (Matthew Perry) and a fiery Isabel (Salma Hayek) who part ways following a one-night encounter in Las Vegas. Three months on, she tracks him down to reveal her pregnancy.

The movie premiere fell on Valentine's Day. Perry, aged 28 at that time, was already globally recognized due to his role in "Friends", whose third season was broadcasting at the time. While the sitcom cemented his popularity among fans, Perry acknowledged his performance as the young lover in the film as the highlight of his career.

FOOLS RUSH IN [1997] - Official Trailer

Crafting his acting and working with Hayek

According to Collider's report, Perry enthusiastically described his collaboration with director Andy Tennant in his book. Tennant had already directed the successful family comedy "It Takes Two" featuring stars like Steve Guttenberg, Kirstie Alley, Jane Sibbett and the Olsen twins. Perry attributed his "best career performance" to Tennant's guidance.

The director advised him to "restrict playing" and convey more through subtler acting techniques. Perry also contrasted his approach to filming a love confession scene with that of Hayek's.

"There's one scene where I confess my love to her. She suggested we shouldn't look at each other – we should rather look at our shared future. After listening to this for about twenty minutes, I finally said: 'Listen, Salma, in this scene I'm telling you I love you. Look where you want, but I'll be looking at you'" - wrote Perry in his book.

Actress Salma Hayek was among those who publicly grieved Perry's loss. In her Instagram post, she fondly reminisced their collaboration on the film.

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