The man who was to bring Academy Award winner Philip Seymour Hoffman to series regular television — by way of the new Showtime comedy Happyish — has shared his thoughts on the actor’s tragic passing at age 46.
“This planet is no damned place to have a heart, and Phil had the biggest, brokenest heart of anyone I have ever met,” Happyish creator/executive producer Shalom Auslander said in a statement. “He was a beautiful person in a hideous world. Great actor, too.”
Happyish was to star Hoffman as an ad man who is sent adrift when his ad agency is taken over. Though a trailer had yet to be released wide, a preview reel shown last month at the Television Critics Association winter press tour played extremely well, almost immediately evoking Emmy buzz for the actor (who netted his first nod in 2005, for the miniseries Empire Falls).
A statement from his would-be home Showtime hailed Hoffman as “one of our generation’s finest and most brilliant actors… It was a great privilege and pleasure to work with him and we are all absolutely devastated by this sudden loss.”
Also on Monday, filmmaker Cameron Crowe shared this anecdote from the filming of Almost Famous, as tribute to Hoffman’s “genius.”
Hoffman had thus far only shot the pilot for Showtime’s Happyish, which might have premiered as early as this summer. The comedy’s fate is now TBD.
A recovering drug addicting for more than two decades, Hoffman was found on Sunday at an apartment in Greenwich Village, dead from an apparent drug overdose with a needle in his arm and baggies of what appeared to be heroin nearby.