Officials to announce cause of Philip Seymour Hoffman's death

Officials to announce cause of Philip Seymour Hoffman's death

Officials to announce cause of Philip Seymour Hoffman's death

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by ABC NEWS

WHAS11.com

Posted on February 2, 2014 at 3:39 PM

Updated Monday, Feb 3 at 7:15 AM

ABC NEWS --  The cause of Philip Seymour Hoffman’s death is expected to be announced today, one day after the Oscar-winning actor was found inside his New York apartment.

Hoffman was 46 years old.

Police sources say Hoffman was found unconscious at around 11:15 a.m. Sunday on the bathroom floor of his apartment by friend and screenwriter David Bar Katz, who called 911. Hoffman was pronounced dead at the scene.

He was supposed to pick up his three children Sunday, but never showed.

He was last seen at 8 p.m. Saturday night.

While the cause of death has not yet been determined, a law enforcement official told ABC News that heroin was found at the scene, with a hypodermic needle seen sticking out of Hoffman’s arm. The New York City Police Department is continuing to investigate.

Hoffman’s family released a statement following his death.

“We are devastated by the loss of our beloved Phil and appreciate the outpouring of love and support we have received from everyone,” the statement reads. “This is a tragic and sudden loss and we ask that you respect our privacy during this time of grieving. Please keep Phil in your thoughts and prayers.”

Hoffman was known as an actor’s actor, a performer who embraced the acting craft while shirking much of the celebrity surrounding his success. His early career was marked by supporting roles – snotty student George Willis, Jr. in “Scent of a Woman”; brown-nosing assistant Brant in “The Big Lebowski”; smarmy boom operator Scotty in “Boogie Nights.”

His success in "Boogie Nights," directed by Paul Thomas Anderson, served as his breakout, and from there he continued to churn out powerful performances. In “Magnolia,” Hoffman shined as Phil, a nurse caring for a dying patient. “The Talented Mr. Ripley” showcased Hoffman’s scene-stealing abilities alongside Matt Damon, Gwyneth Paltrow and Jude Law.

In “25th Hour,” Hoffman brought haunting depth to a high school teacher enamored by one of his students.

And in 2004’s “Along Came Polly,” Hoffman showed off his humorous side as Sandy, a child star turned middle-aged schlub.

Hoffman didn’t look like an A-list star. Too doughy, too normal-looking. Those looks allowed him to slink into his roles, to bring unique, genuine touch to his characters.

By 2005, the actor’s actor became a leading man. His performance in “Capote” – which detailed Truman Capote’s experience penning the book “In Cold Blood” – earned Hoffman the Best Actor Academy Award and the Golden Globe Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture Drama.

Three additional Best Supporting Actor Oscar nominations followed – for “The Master,” “Doubt,” and “Charlie Wilson’s War.”

As his career built, Hoffman struggled with the trappings of fame, a topic he addressed in a 2011 interview with Britain's Guardian newspaper.

“I think that’s pretty much the human condition, you know, waking up and trying to live your day in a way that you can go to sleep and feel OK about yourself,” he said.

Hoffman battled addiction as well – receiving treatment for drug and alcohol addiction in his early 20s, not long after graduating from NYU.

“I went [to rehab], I got sober when I was 22 years old,” he revealed during a 2006 interview with CBS News’ “60 Minutes.” “You get panicked … and I got panicked for my life.”

Hoffman said he was lucky he got sober before becoming famous and had the money to feed his addiction.

“I have so much empathy for these young actors that are 19 and all of a sudden they’re beautiful and famous and rich,” he said in the interview. “I’m like, ‘Oh my God, I’d be dead.'”

The actor said he kicked the habit for 23 years and remained sober until May 2013, when he briefly relapsed – after admitting to snorting heroin – and returned to rehab, spending 10 days in a detox program.

The second of four children, Hoffman was born on July 23, 1967 in Fairport, N.Y., to mother Marilyn O'Connor (née Loucks), a lawyer, and father Gordon Stowell Hoffman who worked for Xerox.

He graduated with a BFA in drama from New York University's Tisch School of the Arts in 1989 and began his film career in 1991, starring in his debut role in the indie production "Triple Bogey on a Par Five Hole."

Beyond movies, Hoffman also shined on Broadway, receiving two Tony nominations for Best Actor in 2000 for a revival of Sam Shepard's "True West" and again in 2003 for a revival of Eugene O'Neill's "Long Day's Journey into Night."

In 2012, Hoffman starred as Willy Loman in the Broadway revival of Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman, receiving rave reviews from critics and his third Tony Award nomination as Best Leading Actor in a Play.

He made his film directorial debut in 2010 with "Jack Goes Boating."

Hoffman’s passing comes amid a flurry of new and upcoming projects. He appears in the 2014 movies “God’s Pocket” and “A Most Wanted Man,” along with “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay” Part 1 and 2, scheduled for release in the coming years.

He was also slated to star in the Showtime series, “Happyish.”

Showtime executives released a statement Sunday, describing Hoffman was “one of our generation’s finest and most brilliant actors.”

Hoffman is survived by his girlfriend, costume designer Mimi O'Donnell, their son, Cooper, 10 and two daughters, Tallulah, 7, and Willa, 5.

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