David Schwimmer, Matthew Perry sitting on a couch: Photography by Terence Patrick Matthew Perry

The creative minds behind Friends and the beloved sitcom’s new HBO Max reunion special are defending star Matthew Perry, whose health status recently became a topic of concern for fans of the show

In recent interviews with The Hollywood Reporter, co-creators Marta Kauffman, David Crane and Kevin Bright and reunion director Ben Winston spoke about Perry, who appeared in the special alongside costars Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc and David Schwimmer after having previously struggled with substance abuse.

“He was great. People can sometimes just be unkind. I wish they weren’t,” Winston told THR, referencing questions about Perry’s health from clips of him in the reunion.

“I loved working with him,” added Winston. “He’s a brilliantly funny man and I thought he had some great one-liners in the show. I felt just happy and lucky to be in his presence and directing him on something like this.”

“I talked to him. It was great seeing him again,” Bright said in a separate interview with the outlet. “And what people say is what people say. I don’t have any to say about that, except it was great to see him. And I think he’s very funny on the show.”

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