It took me a while to decide how I wanted to approach the topic of Phillip Seymor Hoffman’s drug overdose.
I absolutely adored his acting ability and knew just by the fact that he was starring in the role that the movie I was watching would inevitably be great. I really believe he was one of the few that really could ACT.
Yet, for some reason, I hesitate to use the word “untimely” along with “ tragic” to describe his death, as so many of the media channels have done. Those words seem to be more reserved for accidental or random deaths – like getting eaten by a shark.
What is so overwhelmingly astonishing to me about this situation is that He was ‘supposedly’ sober for 23 years and only after his huge success as an Academy Award winning actor, a seemingly stable relationship with a long time partner, and having 3 young children -whom he referred to as his entire world-, only after accomplishing all these things that most average people don’t do in an entire lifetime- only then, did he decide to take up Heroin again.
I don’t pretend to be naive to how easily accessible the lifestyle of drugs and alcohol abuse is when you’re rich and famous. OR how easily accessible the partying lifestyle is anywhere, for that matter, if you seek it out. I fully understand that temptations are everywhere and all it takes is one weak moment to trigger a 1000 memories at just how enticing drugs can be.
Like so many young actors before him, from Jon Belushi to Whitney Houston –their life was overcome by YEARS of CONSISTENT abuse.
But someone like him; who was able to RESIST those temptations from 2 decades ago in his youth- when the lure of sex ,drugs, and the partying lifestyle is all part of bad decisions and being involved with the wrong crowd – but to go on to achieve such an enviable career – and to mature into an accomplished actor, father and life partner- and then – boom- just like that!- suddenly decide to go off the path of sobriety?
It just doesn’t make sense.
I will miss Phillips Seymor Hoffman’s roles that he never played, his potential that will never be realized. But I will not understand how someone who was able to be that controlled for 23 years could allow for a relapse that led to such a final punishment.
Some things aren’t meant for us to understand.
RIP Phillip Seymor Hoffman.