Matt LeBlanc plays the simple, charming, pizza-loving actor, Joey Tribbiani, in Friends. A role which has bagged him a Teen Choice Award (TV Choice Actor 2002), People’s Choice Award (Favourite Male Television Star 2005 ) and loads of Emmy and Golden Globe nominations. ...
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Matt LeBlanc plays the simple, charming, pizza-loving actor, Joey Tribbiani, in Friends. A role which has bagged him a Teen Choice Award (TV Choice Actor 2002), People’s Choice Award (Favourite Male Television Star 2005 ) and loads of Emmy and Golden Globe nominations.
While his character is far from being a hugely successful actor – not that there’s anything wrong with Days Of Our Lives, Mac and C.H.E.E.S.E, V.D. posters and adverts for men’s lipstick – Matt has soared to popularity during his time in Manhattan with his five buddies.
Born in Massachusetts to an Italian mother and a father of mixed Irish, English, Dutch and French ancestry, Matt had one of those loveable faces that was sure to serve him well. After graduating from high school, he spent some time pouting as a photo model in Florida – where his jobs included posing for the cover of a gay travel guide – and also trained to be a carpenter, before moving to New York to take drama classes.
Matt was soon launched onto the small screen, as the star of a number of TV commercials. In 1987, he was the face of a Heinz ketchup ad that won the top prize at Cannes. He also appeared in ads for Levi's 501 jeans, Doritos and Coca-Cola. Random fact - one of Matt’s commercials can be seen on a TV screen in the movie Tequila Sunrise.
In 1988, Mr LeBlanc landed his first regular TV role on the drama TV 101 which ran for one season. Then he became the go-to-face for music videos! In 1990 he starred in Jon Bon Jovi’s video, 'Miracle' from the testosterone-filled Young Guns II soundtrack. In 1991 he starred in Alanis Morissette’s video, 'Walk Away'. He also appeared in the last seconds of the music video for Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers’ 'Into the Great Wide Open'.
In 1991, Matt starred in a spin-off of Married... with Children called Top of the Heap, which lasted seven episodes. He also played his Top of the Heap character, Vinnie Verducci, in a number of Married... with Children episodes.
LeBlanc also appeared in one episode of Red Shoe Diaries in 1991 and trod the boards in a number of theatre productions.
Then along came Friends in 1994 and Matt’s star truly started to rise. His good looks, childlike innocence, failings as an actor and unquestionable charm (don’t pretend you didn’t get excited the first time you heard “How YOU doin?”) made Joey/Matt many people’s Friends favourite.
Matt was the only Friends cast member to get his own spin-off show, Joey, which hit TV screens in 2004.
Matt is a massive motorcycle enthusiast and hosted his own TV show, The 5 Coolest Things (2003), based on the five most exciting things in each motorcycle specialty (off-road, motocross, road racing, freestyle). He also loves dogs and has three pooches himself: Lady, Shadow and Jay.
From 2003 to 2006, he was married to Missy McKnight, with whom he had one child, Marina Pearl.
The actor whose career took off playing an actor whose career never quite took off. Mr Matt LeBlanc, we salute you.