Jennifer Aniston and Courteney Cox led tributes in memory of actor James Michael Tyler, who played Gunther on ‘Friends’. The 59-year-old star died Sunday following his battle with prostate cancer.
Tyler, who played the cranky coffee guy at Central Perk who secretly pined for Rachel Green (Aniston), was often called the seventh member of the ‘Friends’ posse having starred in 150 episodes of the hit sitcom.
Aniston wrote a touching tribute for her late co-star, posting a clip from the 10th season of the show where Gunther professes his love for Rachel as she readies to move to Paris. “Friends would not have been the same without you. Thank you for the laughter you brought to the show and to all of our lives. You will be so missed #JamesMichaelTyler.”
Aniston wasn’t alone in remembering Tyler. “The size of gratitude you brought into the room and showed every day on set is the size of the gratitude I hold for having known you. Rest In peace James,” posted Cox, who played Monica Gellar on ‘Friends’.
Matt LeBlanc, who played out-of-work actor Joey Tribbiani on the show, also remembered Tyler. “We had a lot of laughs buddy. You will be missed. RIP my friend.”
Lisa Kudrow, who played Phoebe Buffay on the show, wrote a similar tribute, saying: “James Michael Tyler, we will miss you. Thank you for being there for us all.”
While the official account of ‘Friends’ also paid tribute to the actor, it was actress Maggie Wheeler’s response which was particularly touching. Wheeler, who played Janice on the sitcom wrote: “So Grateful to have known this kind and gentle man. James Michael Tyler will be dearly missed. My thoughts are with his loved ones at this difficult time.”
Tyler was diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer in September 2018. He appeared in a video message during the HBO Max ‘Friends: The Reunion’ special that saw all the lead cast members reunite for a one-off episode earlier this year, the first time all of them were in a room together after they filmed the series finale in 2004.