Matthew Perry returns to network television with his new sitcom, “Mr. Sunshine” — only this time, he isn’t just the star. Perry is also the co-writer, executive producer and creator of the show about a sports arena manager with a not-so-sunny disposition. Perry spoke with Metro about the joys of multitasking, Justin Bieber stealing his identity and why he isn’t looking for a little help from his “Friends.”
How has the process of creating a show been as opposed to just being an actor?
It’s been a very educational process. I had no idea how much went into doing a television show — a tremendous amount. I used to think that a TV show started on the day of the table read. I was like, “Well, I’m here. So I guess this is the first day.” But no, there’s a lot of work that goes into it.
You wear a lot of hats for the show. Are you good at multitasking?
It’s much more difficult than I thought it was going to be. You have to micromanage and learn what you care about and what you don’t care about. Like I learned that the plant behind [Alison Janney]’s head, I don’t care what that looks like, but somebody really does, so I don’t have to invest time.
Is it true that Justin Bieber uses Chandler Bing’s name to stay at hotels?
Oh, yeah — do you know about that? Justin Bieber uses Chandler Bing as his fake hotel room name, which I found very flattering, but it also made me feel very old. I use Alvy Singer, which is Woody Allen’s name in “Annie Hall,” and Justin Bieber uses Chandler Bing. I actually don’t need a fake name anymore, but he needs a fake name. People aren’t really going, “Wow, Matthew Perry at 41. I want to get up to his hotel room and see what’s going on.” There’s not a whole lot of that happening anymore.
Are there any plans for guest spots by your “Friends” co-stars?
I’m trying to convey something new here, so if we’re lucky enough that we get to make a lot of [episodes], then maybe at some point somewhere down the line, something like that could happen. But I really wanted to try to introduce all these new characters.