It’s a sad reality that celebrities don’t often make it to their 50th birthday. Perhaps it is a curse in Hollywood that whether they die from a drug overdose or some tragic accident, some of our favorite celebrities die far too young. It seems as if none of our favorites living the true Hollywood lifestyle are safe, even those we think will always be around making movies and entertaining us.
There is no particular, or thoughtful reason, as to why this happens so often in Hollywood but it is clearly always a tragedy and no matter how they died, drug overdose or drunk driving, their lives were still taken far too soon.
River Phoenix (1970-1993) - On Halloween night (October 31) in 1993, Stand by Me, actor and heartthrob, River Phoenix collapsed just outside of Hollywood’s famed, The Viper Room. Despite doctors best efforts Phoenix died at the age of 23 from heart failure caused by drug use.
Brandon Lee (1965-1993) – Son of martial arts expert, Bruce Lee, Brandon had an incredible future ahead of him in the world of Hollywood when he starred in the cult classic, The Crow. Sadly on March 31, 1993 the rising star’s life was cut short due to a fatal mistake on the set of The Crow. In a scene involving guns a real bullet was loading into the gun that was fired at Lee, hitting him with a fatal blow.
Jonathan Brandis (1976-2003) – Star of so many teenage films such as Ladybugs, Sidekicks, The Neverending Story II: The next Chapter and the famed television show, SeaQuest 2032, Jonathan Brandis was a teenage girls dream guy with piercing blue eyes and golden blonde hair, girls couldn’t resist. Unfortunately the talented actor took his own life on November 12, 2003 when he hung himself.
Heath Ledger (1979-2008) – Heath Ledger was not only one of Hollywood’s sexiest actors, he was one of the most talented, proving just how incredible he was when he portrayed the Joker in The Dark Knight. Ledger’s career was seemingly taking off to new heights when he died tragically in his New York apartment on January 22, 2008 from an accidental toxic mixture of prescription drugs. He left behind a legacy that would have continued to grow and a beautiful little girl.
Ryan Dunn (1977-2011) – The Jackass star was known for causing chaos and pulling off dangerous stunts with his best friend, professional skateboarder, Bam Margera but no one could have imagined that his life would be cut short in a drunk driving accident in 2011.
Andy Whitfield (1971-2011) – Spartacus star, Andy Whitfield was coming onto the scene full force when he was tragically diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma, a type of cancer that can become quite aggressive. Whitfield was doing nothing reckless, not a drug user or driving under the influence but his life was still cut far too short when he died on September 11, 2011 just a few months after receiving the terrible diagnosis.
Cory Monteith (1982-2013) – It was shocking news when the media broke the story that Cory Monteith, everyone’s favorite kind-hearted actor from Glee, had a drug problem. From the outside Monteith seemed like the all-American boy in love with his Glee co-star, Lea Michele. His drug addiction ended in the tragic end of his life on July 13, 2013 in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. His death rocked Hollywood and his fans to their very core, a terrible tragedy that was completely avoidable.
Paul Walker (1973-2013) – Last week Hollywood lost another talented actor, Paul Walker of Fast and Furious fame. The star and a friend were driving home from Walker’s charity event in support of the tragedy that struck in the Philippines when the car crashed and killed both Walker and his friend, who was driving. Walker died the way he lived, in a fast car. His death has brought to light things many didn’t know about how truly humble and down-to-earth the heartthrob was. A man who never let his star determine who he was, left behind a beautiful daughter who will never know what it would be like to have her daddy walk her down the aisle on her wedding day.