Unfortunate start to February

Arts & Entertainment Editor

On February 2, actor and director Philip Seymour Hoffman was found dead in Manhattan due to a heroin overdose. Hoffman, 46, struggled with substance abuse and addiction on and off for years, and has become a favorite actor among many adoring fans.
Hoffman appeared in a slew of popular movies, many of which received awards or were nominated for awards. Among the list, some stand out titles are ‘Punch-Drunk Love’, ‘Capote’, ‘The Big Lebowski’, ‘Happiness’, ‘Patch Adams’, ‘The Master’, and most recently ‘The Hunger Games: Catching Fire’. The range of personalities and roles Hoffman was able to master were often regarded as being truly impressive by other starlets and a-listers, and he was truly well loved by his co-stars and employers, as well as his family and friends.
Hoffman’s death, as with any death, is an unfortunate reminder of the dangers of substance abuse, even in the rich and famous. His death has been hailed as a tragedy in a slew of tweets and social media posting by actors and actresses, and has redirected the spotlight of media coverage on the prevalence of drug related issues in common day cinema. What goes on underneath of the veil of film with the actors and directors is not always known to the public, and Hoffman’s death is no exception.
On the other end of the spectrum, but no less demoralizing, is the passing of Shirley Temple Black, more commonly known as Shirley Temple. The former child actress died in her home at the age of 85 on February 2. Temple became a household name throughout the 19030’s and the 1970’s, and made a name for herself for being multitalented in singing, acting, tap dancing and being generally adorable with her curly locks and witty retorts that out adults in their place. She starred in multiple shows and movies, including ‘Little Miss Marker’, ‘The Littlest Rebel’ and ‘Little Top’. Performing with huge names in the music industry became commonplace for Temple, as she made appearances with Bing Crosby and Clark Gable. She was the voice and face of her generation, and remained in the hearts of so many people for so long.
No one death is greater than another, whether it is from natural causes or a drug overdose, the death of any loved actor or actress can be a system shock to fans.