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Matt LeBlanc Took Time Off From Acting for the Best Reason: Fatherhood!

Fri, July 30, 2010 2:57pm EDT by Add first Comment

The former Friends star has spent the four years since his show Joey went off the air doing the thing he loves best — being a good dad!

While all of Matt LeBlanc’s co-stars from Friends seem to have found some level of success since the show went off the air (be it in movies — Jennifer Aniston; TV — Courteney Cox, Matthew Perry and Lisa Kudrow; or theater —David Schwimmer), the man known eternally as Joey Tribbiani has kept a low profile. But there’s a good reason for that — he’s been spending quality time with his 6-year-old daughter, Marina (with ex-wife Melissa McKnight).

“When Joey ended, I took a lot of time off… I just really was kind of burned out,” the 43-year-old actor told the audience at the Television Critics Association press tour presentation for his new TV show, Episodes. “I just wanted to be a dad. We have a great bond, and it’s the best thing in my life.”

But no longer the only thing. The new show, in which Matt will conveniently play an actor named Matt LeBlanc, was co-created Friends executive producer and co-creator David Crane, and examines the relationships between actors and producers. “He’s a character that happens to have the same name as me,” said Matt during a panel discussion. “There are some similarities, but, for the most part, it’s fictitious.”

He also didn’t rule out a mini-Friends reunion on the show, but either way, we’ll be watching. Welcome back, Matt!