Thursday, February 6, 2014

Philip Seymour Hoffman R.I.P.

Actor Philip  Seymour Hoffman died on 2 February at the age of 46. As of yet a cause of death has not been determined, although a large amount of both heroin and prescription drugs were found in his apartment.

Philip Seymour Hoffman was born on 23 July 1967 in Fairport, New York. He showed promise at both wrestling and baseball while in high school. Unfortunately a neck injury would end any pursuit of athletics. He was 15 years old when he began acting. When he was 17 he attended the 1984 Theatre School at at the New York State Summer School of the Arts in Saratoga Springs. He studied acting at New York University and graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 1989.

Philip Seymour Hoffman made his television debut in an episode of Law & Order in 1991. He appeared in the mini-series Liberty! The American Revolution. He made his film debut in Triple Bogey on a Par Five Hole (1991). In the Nineties he appeared in such films as Leap of Faith (1992), My Boyfriend's Back (1993), Money for Nothing (1993), The Getaway (1994), When a Man Loves a Woman (1994), Nobody's Fool (1994), Twister (1996), Boogie Nights (1997), Montana (1998), The Big Lebowski (1998), Happiness (1998), Patch Addams (1998), Magnolia (1999), The Talented Mr. Ripley (1999), State and Main (2000), and Almost Famous (2000).  He made his debut on Broadway in 2003 in True West.

From the Naughts into the Teens he appeared in such films as Punch-Drunk Love (2002), Red Dragon (2002), Cold Mountain (2003), Along Came Polly (2004), Capote (2005), Mission: Impossible III (2006), Before the Devil Knows You're Dead (2007), Doubt (2008), The Boat That Rocked (2009), The Invention of Lying (2009), The Ides of March (2011), Moneyball (2011), The Master (2012), and The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2013). He is set to appear in A Most Wanted Man (2014), The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 (2014), and The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 2 (2015). He appeared on Broadway in Long Day's Journey Into Night in 2003 and Death of a Salesman in 2012.

Philip Seymour Hoffman was about as close as one could get to the character actors of the Golden Age of Hollywood. He could play nearly anything, often transforming himself physically to do so. He played a nearly Bondian villain in Mission: Impossible III. He played a homosexual boom operator in Boogie Nights. He played the cocky, American DJ, The Count, in The Boat That Rocked. Mr. Hoffman played at least two historical figures. He made a brief appearance as rock journalist Lester Bangs in Almost Famous and he played writer Truman Capote in Capote. Philip Seymour Hoffman could play a wide array of roles. from neurotic nebbishs to wily schemers to outright villains. While he was probably best known for playing offbeat characters, he had such range that he could play nearly anything. What is more, nearly every performance he gave was well done. He had a talent for acting that only few other actors have today.

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