There have been countless tributes, and out pourings of admiration, and love, and respect for Philip Seymour Hoffman ever since the news of his death this past weekend. And I think you’re about to get another. I’m not old, but I’m not young, I remember when I saw Scent of a Woman for the first time, yep– in a theatre, and saw him do what he’s now known to do so well– playing an unpleasant person on the surface, who you also somehow find compelling and interesting. George Willis Jr. was a
sniveling, conniving, snobbish, two faced, daddy’s boy– but, you kind of liked him. It was weird watching Chris O’Donnell play the sweet, innocent Charlie opposite pundgy, ginger headed, creepy George– but, honestly if you were playing attention– and I was even in 1992 amazingly, you somehow saw and likely thought, “who the hell is this guy, why is he making me pay attention to him, he’s only got three scenes!!??” But that’s simply the kind of performer Philip Seymour Hoffman was. The kind of actor who took small supporting roles from the start like in, Scent of a Woman— which got him his SAG card, and at the finish of his career, like the role of Plutarch Heavensbee in The Hunger Games franchise. And it must be said now, I absolutely, fucking, bloody hate saying the phrase “the finish of his career.”
Hoffman wasn’t done, that’s just the sad fact of it all. Not only was he far too young for this day and age to die at only 46 years old, but he wasn’t finished with multiple projects, like his new series Happyish, which is slated to be released this summer in North America, and he also had at least two directorial projects in the works– including one that had recently just had the boon of casting Jake Gyllenhaal for the lead in it, and then of course there’s the heart wrenching fact that he only had seven days left on his schedule for Mockingjay: Part 2, an that seven days was to film only one last pivotal scene. All these projects still in the proverbail air say a lot to me, and that a lot is this– he wasn’t planning on going anywhere. And we didn’t want him going anywhere for a very very long time.
Good-bye Mister Hoffman– I wanted to see you play Lear at 80.
Them There Eyes
“Howl, howl, howl, howl…” – Lear, Scene III