The Proposed Friends Storyline That Matthew Perry Knew Wouldn't Fly With Fans

While the late Matthew Perry took on many notable roles throughout his acting career, nothing was quite as iconic as his portrayal of Chandler Bing on "Friends." The actor made an undeniable impact on small screens across the country as the awkward but lovable Chandler, but he also had some notable influence behind the scenes.

Besides petitioning to get the final lines of the "Friends" finale, Perry also had a hand in diverting the show's writers from a Monica (played by Courteney Cox) and Chandler infidelity storyline. Lisa Cash, who appeared in Season 5 Episode 23 of the show, was originally cast as a Las Vegas hotel worker who Chandler would cheat on Monica with.

"We had rehearsed it and everything," Cash shared with TMZ. "Then the day before we were shooting in front of a live audience, I was told that Chandler went to the writers and said the audience will never forgive him for cheating on Monica, which he was probably right."

Monica and Chandler's relationship was a big part of Friends

Avid fans of "Friends" will know that the on-screen relationship between Courteney Cox and Matthew Perry's characters was a big element of the sitcom's later seasons. The Chandler and Monica romance was kicked off in the Season 4 finale, with the two hooking up in a hilarious reveal during the episode titled "The One With Ross' Wedding: Part 2."

Despite their casual and secretive beginnings, the couple became a mainstay of the series, with the two moving in together, getting married, and eventually going on an adoption journey. However, the almost-scene that Lisa Cash shares could've changed this trajectory entirely. "Basically, the scene was Chandler and Monica were arguing in Vegas," the actor shared with TMZ, adding their dispute was caused by Monica having a lunch date with her ex. This detail did make it into the final episode.

"Chandler goes up to the hotel room, orders room service and I bring it up as a hotel worker," Cash continued. "We end up talking, laughing, and connecting and Chandler ends up cheating on Monica with my character." Thanks to Perry, the scene was never filmed, with Cash being re-casted as a flight attendant in a Ross and Rachel storyline.

The on-screen couple's original fate was uncertain

Even though Monica and Chandler's relationship became a staple of "Friends" after it was introduced in Season 4, the show's writers weren't originally sure that the romance would be a lasting thing. Executive producer Scott Silveri opened up about the thought process behind the inception of the on-screen relationship and how it became a vital part of the sitcom.

"The thinking was, if the show's going to be entertaining for years to come, it can't simply rest on this one [Ross and Rachel] relationship," Silveri told Vulture, adding that the idea was originally pitched for Season 3. "So it follows that if another pair got together, that would be fun and provide more story." The executive producer goes on to explain that the idea was postponed until Season 4 when things had cooled off between Ross and Rachel.

At the time, the writers paid careful attention to how the audience reacted to the new pairing, uncertain about the future of the Monica and Chandler romance. In this way, it makes sense that the show creators were willing to test out an infidelity storyline, as they weren't necessarily intent on making the relationship a long-term thing. We're just glad that Matthew Perry intervened when he did.