Zac Efron Offers Sweet Tribute To Matthew Perry At Walk Of Fame Ceremony

The "Iron Claw" actor credited Perry, who died in October, with helping to "propel me and motivate me in so many ways.”

With his Hollywood career hitting a new stride, actor Zac Efron is taking time to acknowledge the influence of his late “17 Again” co-star, Matthew Perry.

For many fans, “17 Again” marked the start of Efron’s transition from his “High School Musical” days to more mature roles ― a point that the actor himself addressed during an emotional moment in his speech Monday as he received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

“I really also want to mention someone that’s not here today, and that’s Matthew Perry,” Efron said. Describing the “Friends” actor, who died in October, as “so kind and generous,” he noted: “Collaborating with him and [writer-director] Burr Steers was so much fun, and it really did propel me and motivate me in so many ways.”

“It really pushed me into the next chapter of my career. and for that, thank you so much, Matthew,” Efron added. “Thinking about you a lot today.”

Watch a clip of Zac Efron’s Hollywood Walk of Fame speech below.

Released in 2009, “17 Again” starred Efron and Perry as younger and older versions of the same character, Mike O’Donnell. The former high school athlete gets a chance to course-correct his life when he is magically transformed into his teenage self. The film raked in a reported $139.5 million at the box office worldwide.

Shortly before his Oct. 28 death, Perry name-checked Efron as his top choice to portray him in a biopic, which Efron called “a huge honor.”

“Matthew is just the best guy in the world, and I had the best time of my life working with him,” he said at the time. “And to think that he was thinking of me for that role, I mean, I would be honored to do it, to be honest.”

Michelle Trachtenberg (left), Zac Efron, Leslie Mann and Matthew Perry at the premiere of "17 Again" in 2009.
Michelle Trachtenberg (left), Zac Efron, Leslie Mann and Matthew Perry at the premiere of "17 Again" in 2009.
Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Later this month, Efron returns to the big screen in the hotly anticipated drama “The Iron Claw.” He portrays Kevin Von Erich, the last surviving member of a real-life family of professional wrestlers whose lives were upended by a series of tragedies.

Early reviews of the film, which also stars Lily James and Jeremy Allen White, have been positive. Variety called it “a perfect movie for this moment,” while IndieWire singled out Efron for delivering “the performance of a lifetime.”

Popular in the Community


What's Hot