John Stamos Got Real About Getting Embarrassed On The Friends Set And How It Was Matthew Perry Who Totally Saved Him

John Stamos Got Real About Getting Embarrassed On The Friends Set And How It Was Matthew Perry Who Totally Saved Him

Securing a gig as a guest star on Friends was probably a pretty special thing for actors in the ‘90s and early aughts, as the sitcom boasted cameos from a number of A-listers including Brad Pitt, Bruce Willis, Reese Witherspoon and more. But it wasn’t an easy job, as even people like Tom Selleck have admitted to being “scared to death” to join the ensemble. Full House star John Stamos endured his own embarrassing moment when he appeared in a Season 9 episode, and he recalled how Matthew Perry totally saved him. 

John Stamos Was ‘Heartbroken’ Over Audience Reaction To His Friends Appearance 

The man otherwise known as Uncle Jesse from Full House guest-starred in the 2003 episode, “The One with the Donor,” in which John Stamos played the titular donor, Zack. Monica (Courteney Cox) and Chandler (Matthew Perry) were interviewing Zack (unbeknownst to him) to be a possible sperm donor, as the couple were experiencing problems conceiving on their own. In a 2021 interview with Access Hollywood, Stamos recalled not getting the reception he expected from the live studio audience. He said: 

I had this entrance where the character would come, the door would open and I came in, and they said, ‘OK, you come in here and you hold for applause and then you take your moment and then you move on. And Matt Perry’s like, ‘Oh man, they’re going to be excited,’ and I open the door, I walk in — silence. And I’m like, uhhh. And Matt just says the line and then we went on, and I was like, I don’t know if they didn’t [recognize me], I don’t know what it was, but I remember just being sort of heartbroken, like they were all waiting for the people to clap — in the audience — and they didn’t.

What a blow to the ego. Going in front of a live audience was already a terrifying experience for many Friends guest stars, but then to be told to hold for applause that never comes must have been a shock. It sounds like the Friends actors themselves were just as stunned, especially given how Matthew Perry acted afterward. 

Matthew Perry Ensured John Stamos Got The Recognition He Deserved 

In a tribute to Matthew Perry following his death in October at age 54, John Stamos recalled that same story from his Friends experience, writing on Instagram about standing backstage and having the Chandler actor tell him the audience was about to go crazy, so “get ready for some loud screams,” before he walked out to silence. However, he went on to say that Perry ensured Stamos got the recognition they'd all expected, writing: 

I was so embarrassed. We finish the scene and as I start to slither back to my dressing room and quit showbiz, Matt walks over to the studio audience: ‘Ladies and gentlemen, give it up for John Stamos! You guys probably didn’t recognize him at first because he’s so much better looking in person!’ I never forgot that and the world will never forget you. #ripmatthewperry

What a sweet move by Matthew Perry, to not only lead the audience in recognizing the guest star, but to justify their initial lack of enthusiasm by blaming it on John Stamos’ good looks. Who ever said flattery won’t get you anywhere? Several celebrities have paid tribute to Perry since he was found dead of a suspected drowning in his jacuzzi, including his Friends co-stars, who released a touching message before later memorializing him on their individual social media accounts.

For those who want to remember Matthew Perry, check out these great Chandler episodes of Friends, as all 10 seasons can be streamed with a Max subscription