It’s been a year since actor Philip Seymour Hoffman passed away after overdosing from a cocktail of drugs and fans are still mourning the loss of a talented character actor.
Hoffman’s hometown in Fairport, New York remembers the actor as a happy kid who was “really living and burning brightly and having fun.” Hoffman’s teachers in Fairport High School remember the actor as a curious student. When Hoffman starred in P.T. Anderson’s Punch Drunk Love back in 2002, the entire theater erupted to a rousing applause when their hometown actor appeared on the big screen.
— Juli Klie (@Juli_K) February 4, 2014
— TWC News Rochester (@TWCNewsROC) February 7, 2014
— The Film Stage (@TheFilmStage) February 3, 2015
All over the world, fans are remembering the great actor who starred in films like Capote, The Hunger Games, Boogie Nights, and The Master. Caleb Slain, a fan of the actor spent almost 200 hours to produce an emotional tribute video that features some of Hoffman’s best work. From the actor’s bit part on Law and Order to his defining roles in Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead and Charlie Wilson’s War, Slain wanted to show the dedication of the late actor to his craft. “Please take a breather and raise your glasses to one of our finest,” Slain wrote to describe the video.
Meanwhile, in an opinion piece on The Huffington Post, Johann Hari, author of the book Chasing the Scream: The First and Last Days of the War on Drugs used Hoffman’s death as an example to drive his point about the war on drugs. Hari argues that Hoffman could have been spared if drugs were decriminalized. He cited Portugal as an example; the country decriminalized all drugs and used the budget for busting users to provide help for recovering addicts. This act resulted in a decrease in drug activity and a huge dip in the number of deaths related to overdose.
“Today, one hundred years into the drug war, we have a decision to make,” Hari wrote. “We can wait for the next death, and the next death, and the next after that -- or we can decide to choose to let addicts live. It's up to us.”