A long time ago, Billy Joel wrote “Only The Good Die Young”.
He should have said only the great die young.
James Dean, Natalie Wood, River Pheonix, Heath Ledger, James Gandolfini.
Sometimes the greatest talents aren’t destined to die of old age. They die well before that, when they are still at the peak of their greatness.
Phillip Seymour Hoffman‘s name can now be added to this list.
He died this morning of an apparent drug overdose.
I saw him in the most recent revival of Arthur Miller’s classic play, Death of a Salesman. While he was a few decades younger than the character and Brian Dennehy, who had played the character in the previous revival, it felt like I was seeing this play and being introduced to this character for the first time.
His Willy Loman was a man of big dreams, caught between the past and the present, between dreams and reality. It was an incredibly powerful performance. I wish I had seen it more than once.
My heart and my prayers go out to his friends and family.
While he is gone from this world, his work and his legacy will remain.