Philip Seymour Hoffman died of an accidental overdose involving a powerful cocktail of drugs, authorities announced Friday.
Heroin, cocaine, benzodiazepines and amphetamine were found in the actor’s system, causing “acute drug intoxication,” according to the report from New York’s Office of Chief Medical Examiner.
Hoffman’s body was found Feb. 2 in the bathroom of his New York apartment with a syringe still in his forearm, so confirmation of an overdose wasn’t unexpected, though the details shed some further light on the extent of the actor’s drug use. Taking heroin with cocaine is known as “speedballing,” which also killed stars John Belushi and River Phoenix.
The Oscar-winning actor was remembered at a private funeral held Feb. 7 in Manhattan that was attended by numerous celebrities, including many actors who’d worked with Hoffman in various films including “The Talented Mr. Ripley,” “Doubt,” “Boogie Nights,” “Capote,” “Magnolia” and “The Master.”
Hoffman, who at the time of his death was reportedly estranged from Mimi O’Donnell, his partner of 14 years, left behind three children: Willa, 5, Tallulah, 7, and Conner, 10. In his will, drafted before the girls were born, he expressed a desire that his son be brought up in Manhattan, with Chicago and San Francisco as runner-up cities.
In related news, Hoffman’s friend David Bar Katz, one of two people who found the actor’s body, has settled a libel lawsuit with the National Enquirer, which in the wake of the death ran a false story saying the two men had been lovers and that Katz had watched Hoffman freebase cocaine.
Two days after publishing the story, the Enquirer apologized and withdrew the piece. A “David Katz” allegedly interviewed for the article was not the actual David Bar Katz.
“The issue was never me being outraged at being accused of being gay — we’re theater guys, who cares?” Katz told the New York Times. “The issue was lying about the drugs, that I would betray my friend by telling confidences.”
Though the amount of the settlement was confidential, the paper said, Katz’s newly established American Playwriting Foundation will use the money to award a $45,000 prize annually for an unproduced play — and it’s reportedly funded for years to come.
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