From 1950s crime authors to cult leaders and rock critics

By Alex Heigl
February 02, 2014 02:00 PM
Sony Pictures Classics

Philip Seymour Hoffman was found dead in his New York apartment Sunday, from an apparent heroin overdose. As more details emerge, we’re taking a look back at some of Hoffman’s most iconic roles. The first half of his career was marked by intense supporting parts in films like Boogie Nights and Almost Famous, but his searing turn as Truman Capote in Capote set to rest any notions that he couldn’t carry a film. Here’s a look back at the characters that defined Hoffman’s career.

2000: Lester Bangs, Almost Famous

Grantland music writer Steven Hyden Tweeted on Sunday, “It goes without saying that for a generation of rock critics that Philip Seymour Hoffman was the Lester Bangs we see our heads.”

2005: Truman Capote, Capote

Hoffman won the Academy Award for Best Actor for his role as Truman Capote.

2007: Gust Avrakotos, Charlie Wilson’s War

Hoffman’s aviator-shaded turn as affable CIA agent Gust Avrakotos earned him an Oscar nod for Best Supporting Actor as well. (Warning: A few R-rated phrases.)

2007: Jon Savage, The Savages

Hoffman displayed an easygoing chemistry with costar Laura Linney in this film about two siblings caring for their aging father.

2008: Caden Cotard, Synecdoche, New York

Hoffman portrayed a playwright making a play about his life, which was fitting since Hoffman frequently turned up on the New York theater circuit.

2008: Father Brendan Flynn, Doubt

Hoffman went toe-to-toe with Meryl Streep as a conflicted Boston priest.

2011: Art Howe, Moneyball

Hoffman portrayed Oakland A’s manager Art Howe in Moneyball, and while Howe wasn’t thrilled with how his character was portrayed in the film, seemingly no one found any fault with Hoffman’s performance.

2012: Lancaster Dodd, The Master

Hoffman was nominated for Best Supporting Actor for his role as guru/leader Lancaster Dodd.

2013: Plutarch Heavensbee, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire

Hoffman’s death will no doubt impact the Hunger Games trilogy, given the importance of his character to the series.


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