NEW YORK, NY – Oscar winning actor Philip Seymour Hoffman was found dead today in his Manhattan apartment. He was 46.
According to authorities, it appears Hoffman died of an apparent drug overdose.
Law enforcement sources told CNN that Hoffman was discovered in dead in his bathroom with a needle in his left arm. They also found in his apartment eight empty glassine-type bags that usually contain heroin.
The bags were stamped with “Ace of Hearts” and “Ace of Spades,” street names for the heroin.
Hoffman was last seen Saturday night at around 8 and he was expected to pick up his kids on Sunday. Playwright David Katz and another person went to the apartment and discovered the body.
“We are devastated by the loss of our beloved Phil and appreciate the outpouring of love and support we have received from everyone. This is a tragic and sudden loss and we ask that you respect our privacy during this time of grieving,” Hoffman’s family said in a statement. “Please keep Phil in your thoughts and prayers.”
Hoffman won the Academy Award for Best Actor for the 2005 biographical film Capote, and received three Academy Award nominations as Best Supporting Actor. He also received three Tony Award nominations for his work in theater.
In 2013, he played Plutarch Heavensbee in The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, the sequel to The Hunger Games.
Hoffman began his acting career in 1991, gradually gaining recognition for his supporting work in a number of films including Scent of a Woman (1992), Twister (1996), and Boogie Nights (1997).
He appeared in such films as The Big Lebowski , Patch Adams, Magnolia, The Talented Mr. Ripley and many more.
Hoffman played the title role in Capote and won multiple acting awards including an Academy Award for Best Actor. He received another three Academy Award nominations for his supporting work in Charlie Wilson’s War (2007), Doubt (2008) and The Master (2012).
In 2010, Hoffman made his feature film directorial debut with Jack Goes Boating.
Hoffman was an accomplished theater actor and director as well, joining the LAByrinth Theater Company in 1995. He went on to direct and perform in numerous stage productions. His performances in three Broadway plays led to three Tony Award nominations: two for Best Leading Actor in True West (2000) and Death of a Salesman (2012); one for Best Featured Actor in Long Day’s Journey into Night (2003).
LONDON – The legendary film and stage actor Peter O’Toole has died after a long illness. He was 81.
The Irish born O’Toole’s was best known for his role in the movie ‘Lawrence of Arabia.’ He shot to stardom in the ‘60s when he got his big break after Sir David cast him as British adventured T E Lawrence.
According to his agent O’Toole died on Saturday at London’s Wellington hospital in London after a long illness. In a statement he said O’Toole was “one of a kind in the very best sense and a giant in his field.”
He received an honorary Oscar in 2003, but initially refused to accept the award. In a letter addressed to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences he told the Academy to wait until he was 80 since he was still in the game and might just win the “bugger.”
O’Toole was nominated a total of eight times in the past.
LOS ANGELES, CA –Paul Walker, best known for his role as Brian O’Connor in the popular “Fast & Furious” movies, has died in a car accident in Southern California on Saturday. The actor was 40-years-old.
According to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, two people were killed in an accident that took place at around 3:30 p.m. on Saturday in Santa Clarita. Both victims were pronounced dead at the scene.
The second victim has not been identified.
Walker was a passenger in the vehicle and had just attended a charity event for his organization, Reach Out Worldwide earlier in the day.
Young was a no-show for filming on Monday. Management contacted police to conduct a welfare check at his Los Angeles home to check on the actor.
His manager, Jonathan Baruch, confirmed that Young committed suicide.
Young starred in Disney’s ‘The Famous Jett Jackson,’ which ran from 1998 to 2001. More recently he appeared as Detective Barry Frost on TNT’s Rizzoli & Isles.
TNT released a statement saying they were, “beyond heartbroken at the loss of this sweet, gentle, good-hearted, intelligent man. He was truly a member of our family. Lee will be cherished and remembered by all who knew and loved him, both on- and off-screen, for his positive energy, infectious smile and soulful grace. We send our deepest condolences and thoughts to his family, to his friends and, most especially, to his beloved mother.”
The Disney Channel released a statement, “Nothing any of us can say will adequately express our sadness over Lee’s untimely passing — our thoughts are with his loved ones and the many fans of his work.”
NEWBURY, CA – Actor Joe Conley died earlier this week at a care facility in Newbury Park, Calif., at the age of 85.
Conley’s wife of 44 years made the announcement Tuesday.
Conley is best known for his role as general store owner Ike Godsey, in the CBS family drama “The Waltons.” He also appeared in six reunion movies for the show.
The New York native died Sunday in a care facility in the Thousand Oaks community of Newbury Park. According to the Hollywood Reporter, he had been battling dementia.
Conley started out as a child radio star. While attending classes he starred in plays at Loyola University and Arizona State. He also served in the Korean War.
He began his acting career on the big screen started with the 1950 film “The Sound of Fury,” he went on to appear in other movies such as, “Crime of Passion,” “Blueprint for Robbery” and “Cast Away.”
His many television credits include “Mister Ed,” “The People’s Choice,” “Lassie,” “Make Room for Daddy,” “Dragnet,” “Wanted: Dead or Alive,” “Dennis the Menace,” “Gunsmoke” and “Green Acres.”
Conley is survived by his wife and children — Kevin, Julie, Erin and Jana.
According to agent Simon Beresford, British actor Richard Griffiths died on Thursday, following complications from heart surgery at the University Hospital of Coventry and Warwickshire.
Griffiths played the role of Uncle Vernon Dursely who was the Muggle guardian to Harry Potter in the ‘Harry Potter’ movies. He was considered a versatile actor appearing in numerous movies and TV shows, including the movies ‘Chariots of Fire’ and ‘Naked Gun 2 1/2.’
A Tony winner, Griffiths was one of Britain’s leading theater actors. Winning the Tony for his role in the play “The History Boys,” he went on to play the role in the film adaptation.
One of his is more memorable roles was when he played Uncle Monty in ‘Withnail and I,’ which was considered a failure until it attracted a cult following.
Richard E. Grant who starred with Griffiths in ‘Withnail and I’ tweeted, “My beloved ‘Uncle Monty’ Richard Griffiths died last night. Chin-Chin my dear friend.” Sending out a tweet to Harry Potter hero Daniel Radcliffe, Grant tweets, “@DanieIRadcIiffe Am so so sad that we have both lost an ‘Uncle’ with the death of Richard Griffiths. He was my ‘Uncle Monty’ in my 1st film.”
Radcliffe said of Griffiths, “Any room he walked into was made twice as funny and twice as clever just by his presence. I am proud to say I knew him.”
Griffiths was well known for his sense of humor and his passion for theater. He was renowned for stopping a play mid-performance whenever an audience member’s cell phone would go off, asking the offending party to leave.
Just last year Griffith’s played opposite Danny DeVito in Neil Simon’s comedy ‘The Sunshine Boys,’ they were scheduled to perform in Los Angeles later this year.
In a statement Radcliffe said, “Richard was by my side during two of the most important moments of my career,” continuing he wrote, “In August 2000, before official production had even begun on Potter, we filmed a shot outside the Dursleys’, which was my first ever shot as Harry. I was nervous and he made me feel at ease. Seven years later, we embarked on ‘Equus’ together. It was my first time doing a play but, terrified as I was, his encouragement, tutelage and humor made it a joy.”
Griffiths is survived by his wife, Heather Gibson.
Andy Williams died Tuesday after battling bladder cancer for the past year.
The 84 year old singer passed away at his home in Branson Missouri, which is also the location of his Moon River Theater. The theater is named for one of his most famous songs “Moon River.”
Born Howard Andrew Williams, he soon became known as Andy Williams as he rose to stardom in 1954 when he became a regular on the original Tonight Show starring Steve Allen.
Williams is known for hits including “Can’t Help Falling in Love,” “Can’t Get Used to Losing You,” “Where Do I Begin” and “Happy Heart.”
The Andy Williams show ran from 1962 to 1971, he also starred in movies such as “Kansas City Kitty” and “Ladies’ Man.”
The family asks that donations be sent to the Bladder Cancer Advocacy Group.
A Chinese invasion of sorts took place on Saturday in Lincoln, where Thunder Valley Casino hosted a Chinese concert series starring some of the biggest names in Chinese entertainment.
The stars of the show were Dragon Li, Michelle Kim and Niki Chow. All were well received by the mostly “” scratch that “” all Asian crowd. That was a good thing since the concert was mostly in Chinese, with only a couple of songs with English interspersed.
At one point I could swear they were talking about me. I usually only get paranoid after taking illicit drugs or riding in an elevator with people talking in a language I don’t understand. Oh well, next time I’ll have to bring a Chinese-to-English translator. Wait, isn’t there an app for that?
The audience loved the show, which was a combination of singing and chatting with the audience. Both Chow and Li started up conversations with audience members while keeping their fans laughing. Several fans ended up on stage dancing and singing. No translator required.
Although I don’t speak Chinese it was easy to follow what was happening both onstage and off. While the stars of the show were speaking in Chinese it was obvious to me when they were telling a joke versus telling a story, or setting up a song. Their body language spoke volumes and once a song began you couldn’t help but sit back and enjoy the music.
It was obvious from the start that Dragon Li was the seasoned veteran. He bantered back and forth with the audience in between songs and was quite comfortable onstage as were both Yim and Chow. He seemed to enjoy the audience participation more than his fellow artists.
Dragon Li performing at Thunder Valley Casino (Image by: Randy Miramontez) Li, an actor and singer, got his start in Hong Kong in the late 1980s when he entered a singing contest, Sing Bao Ji Yei. There he was discovered by a talent manager and later signed with EMI Records. He recorded a number of television and movie theme songs, including “Superstar (Gui Sing),” “Brave (Nan Ji Han)” and “Confused (Ching Mi).” Li also starred in the television series “Journey to the West (Si You Gei).”
Michelle Yim performing at Thunder Valley Casino (Image by: Randy Miramontez) Michelle Yim, also known by her Chinese stage name Mai Suet, is a Hong Kong actress. In 1975, Yim joined Commercial Television, and in 1976, Yim acted in “Legend of the Condor Heroes,” a Wuxia TV series adaptation of Louis Cha’s novel of the same title. In 1978, Yim started working with Television Broadcasts (TVB) and guest-starred in one of the period dramas, “The Twins,” which later became one of her best works. Her most recent work won her the award for best drama performance by an actress for her role in “Moonlight Resonance” at the Asian Television Awards.
Niki Chow performs at Thunder Valley Casino (Image by: Randy Miramontez) Niki Chow is a Hong Kong actress and Cantopop (Hong Kong popular music) singer. Until recently she was under contract with BMA Records, but she terminated the contract to pursue a new contract with TVB. She has appeared in several movies and television series, including “Hard Fate” and “The Gentle Crackdown.” She won the most improved actress award at the TVB Anniversary Awards in 2005 for her performance in “The Gentle Crackdown.” She has also authored several books and is scheduled to begin filming an “Ancient Series” for TVB beginning in July.
The summer concert series at Thunder Valley Casino has just started and tickets are selling fast. The complete entertainment schedule is available on their website.