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Culture

Actor Philip Seymour Hoffman found dead in New York

© AFP

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2014-02-03

Oscar-winning actor Philip Seymour Hoffman was found dead in his New York apartment on Sunday, police said. He was 46.

Police responded to the scene in Manhattan's West Village and found Hoffman dead at about 11:15am (1615 GMT).

A New York city police source told Reuters the actor had died of an apparent drug overdose and local media reported that he was found with a needle in his arm.

Hoffman won several awards including an Oscar for Best Actor for the 2005 biographical film 'Capote', in which he played the part of 20th-century American writer Truman Capote.

He also received three Academy Award nominations as Best Supporting Actor.

Born Philip Hoffman in July 1967 in New York state, he was the third of four children of a Xerox executive and a feminist housewife who divorced when he was nine.

An avid athlete, the stocky youth became involved in school theatrics after suffering an injury. He earned a drama degree from New York University in 1989, though he fell into alcohol and drug abuse for a while.

After inserting his grandfather's name, Seymour, between his existing names, he made his big screen debut in a 1991 independent film called 'Triple Bogey on a Par Five Hole'.

In 1997, he made a quiet splash as a closeted gay crew member who makes a tentative pass at star Mark Wahlberg in Paul Thomas Anderson's porn industry tale 'Boogie Nights', followed by a quirky turn as a toady in the Coen brothers' 'The Big Lebowski' (1998).

In Anthony Minghella's unique crime thriller 'The Talented Mr Ripley', he stole the show from co-stars Matt Damon, Jude Law and Gwyneth Paltrow with his stealthy supporting role as slippery and duplicitous preppie Freddie Miles.

The hard-working actor played music reporter Lester Bangs in Cameron Crowe's 'Almost Famous' (2000) and then took on the role of a lonely lecher in Todd Solondz's 'Happiness' (1998).

He also had striking roles in Anderson's 'Magnolia', starring Tom Cruise (1999); in 'Flawless', in which he plays a melodramatic drag queen, opposite Robert De Niro; in 'Punch-Drunk Love'; and in big-budget pictures like the 2003 Oscar winner 'Cold Mountain.'

Hoffman was due to appear in the next episode of the 'Hunger Games' film series, currently in production.

(FRANCE 24 with AFP, Reuters)

Philip Seymour Hoffman in 'Capote '

Date created : 2014-02-02

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