Friends, one of the most popular sitcoms in the ’90s, had more than its six main characters. Many fans also loved the series’ side characters, like the snarky and emotional coffee shop manager, Gunther, portrayed by James Michael Tyler. Unfortunately, Tyler passed away on October 24, and now many Friends cast members are remembering the great actor…
Gunther: A Vital Part Of Friends
Sadly, Friends actor James Michael Tyler has passed away at the age of 59. The actor not only battled prostate cancer for three years, but also used his light to bring awareness of the disease to the masses. “The world knew him as Gunther (the seventh “Friend”), from the hit series Friends, but Michael’s loved ones knew him as an actor, musician, cancer-awareness advocate, and loving husband,” a statement from Tyler’s representative, Toni Benson, read. “Michael loved live music, cheering on his Clemson Tigers, and would often find himself in fun and unplanned adventures. If you met him once you made a friend for life.”
Apart from the beloved role of Gunther on Friends, Tyler also appeared in episodes of Scrubs, Modern Music, and Sabrina the Teenage Witch. Thankfully for fans and his co-stars, the actor felt well enough to appear in the Friends: The Reunion which aired on HBO earlier this year. While he was not able to appear in person, to his dismay, he appeared viz Zoom. That will be Tyler’s last television credit.
Since his passing, many of the cast and crew members of Friends have posted their love of Tyler on social media…
Remembering James Michael Tyler
The first to post about Tyler’s death were Marta Kauffman and David Crane, the creators of Friends. They had nothing but nice things to say about what the actor brought to the sitcom set. “He made Gunther’s unrequited love incredibly relatable. Our heart goes out to his wife, Jennifer Carno,” they said in a statement.
Warner Brothers. television also commented on Tyler’s passing through the official Friends Twitter account. “Warner Bros. Television mourns the loss of James Michael Tyler, a beloved actor and integral part of our FRIENDS family,” the official account posted on the morning after his passing. “Our thoughts are with his family, friends, colleagues and fans.”
Of course, many also wanted to know how the main cast felt about Tyler’s passing. Actress Jennifer Aniston was short, sweet, and to the point: “Friends would not have been the same without you,” she wrote. “Thank you for the laughter you brought to the show and to all of our lives. You will be so missed.” Actress Courtney Cox responded with similar sentiments, writing, “The size of gratitude you brought into the room and showed every day on set is the size of gratitude I hold for having known you. Rest in peace James.”
While David Schwimmer and Matthew Perry do use Twitter, Joey actor Matt LeBlanc took to the platform to post a photo of Tyler from the Friends set. “We had a lot of laughs buddy. You will be missed. RIP my friend,” he captioned the image.
Rest in peace, James Michael Tyler.