Philip Seymour Hoffman Dead at 46

Philip Seymour Hoffman
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Philip Seymour Hoffman dead at 46.

That was the headline screaming across movie sites on Sunday morning, Feb. 2. The Hollywood Reporter claimed “possible drug overdose” while CNN reported┬áthat he had a needle in his arm when the playwright he was working with found him found him dead in the bathroom.

With that, mixed emotions swell up.

Hoffman had been clean and sober for 23 years after battling with numerous drugs. He was 22 when he cleaned up for the first time. Then, in 2012, he fell off the wagon and checked himself into rehab. The drug in question at the time of his rehab stint was heroin.

Mixed emotions – anger, depression and pity.

There will be a lot of talk about how he died in the upcoming days. “Another drug overdose of a celebrity.” It is horrifying to think that Hoffman’s last Oscar nomination was in The Master, a movie he co-starred in alongside Joaquin Phoenix.

21 years ago, Joaquin’s brother River Phoenix died of a drug overdose outside the Viper Room.

21 years.

I have had strong connections with people who were addicted to drugs. Two of my closest friends over the last 24 years have suffered with drug addiction – separated in my life by two decades. I stuck with both of these friends as they fought their addictions and I watched what it did to them – to their personalities to their confidence to their bodies to their inability to keep their friends as they made one bad decision after the next.

Honestly, both times it was hard for me to stay by their side at times, but both friends deserved to have at least one friend who would remain loyal to them and one friend who would keep the faith that they could turn their lives around.

Drugs – hardcore drugs like Crank, Heroin and Meth – are a killer. These are drugs that are hard to beat and almost impossible to kick alone.

I don’t know what was happening with Philip Seymour Hoffman as he relapsed last year, I don’t know what he was going through this year, and honestly it is none of our business. What I do know is that Hoffman had a horrible addiction and it is one that beat him in the end.

Philip Seymour Hoffman starred in my favorite movie of all time, Magnolia. He won an Oscar for playing Truman Capote and picked up three other nominations. He was considered one of the finest actors of our time. And now he is gone, way too early.

RIP.

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About the Author

Shawn S. Lealos
Shawn is a film critic with over 25 years of experience in print and online media. He is a member of the Oklahoma Film Critics Circle and loves everything from critically acclaimed movies to B-level action flicks.
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