Hollywood

New Brittany Murphy doc reveals details on death, con artist husband

On a Sunday morning in December 2009, Brittany Murphy immediately collapsed within the rest room of the West Hollywood dwelling she shared along with her husband, Simon Monjack. Later that morning, the petite, doe-eyed actress was taken to Cedars-Sinai Medical Heart, the place she was quickly pronounced useless. Authorities initially stated the 32-year-old died from a deadly mixture of pneumonia and prescribed drugs, however a brand new two-part documentary delves deeper into the mysterious, nefarious circumstances round her tragic loss of life and her troubled relationship with Monjack.

Premiering Oct. 14 on HBO Max, “What Occurred, Brittany Murphy?” seems at how Murphy went from one of her generation’s most promising young stars, with memorable turns in films such as “Clueless” and “Lady, Interrupted,” to one of Hollywood’s darkest tragedies.

Within the documentary, reporter Amber Ryland remembers getting an unique interview with Monjack shortly after Murphy’s loss of life. “It was at the back of my thoughts, ‘Am I sitting with a assassin?’” she says. “’May he have killed his spouse?’” 

HBO’s new documentary examines Brittany Murphy’s disturbing relationship along with her husband, Simon Monjack, and their eerie deaths.
Anthony Dixon WENN

Brittany Murphy was born in Atlanta in 1977. Her father was out and in of jail, and he or she was raised by her mom, Sharon Murphy. She began finding out efficiency and dance at age 5. By her teenagers, she was a profitable working actress, scoring roles on “Murphy Brown,” “Sister, Sister,” “Boy Meets World” and lots of different TV exhibits of the time.

Murphy’s breakout got here in 1995’s “Clueless,” enjoying Alicia Silverstone’s hilarious sidekick Tai. Acclaimed turns in movies akin to “Lady, Interrupted,” “8 Mile” and “Sin Metropolis” adopted — as did high-profile romances with musicians Eminem and Fred Durst, actor Ashton Kutcher and producer Jeff Kwatinetz. However her shiny future dimmed when she coupled up with Monjack, a struggling British screenwriter seven years her senior who had cash issues, sketchy previous romances and a troubled relationship with the law and immigration officers.

Brittany Murphy with Simon Monjack a month after they married in April 2007.
Brittany Murphy with Simon Monjack a month after they married in April 2007. It was a poisonous relationship that contributed to her tragic finish, based on family and friends in a brand new documentary.
Dave Allocca/Starpix/Shutterstoc

The 2 reportedly began relationship in 2006 and issues rapidly obtained severe. Pals and acquaintances consider the actress — susceptible, too trusting and desperate to quiet down — obtained bamboozled by a con artist.

Simon Monjack as a young teen boy stands on a sidewalk wearing a suit.
Was Simon Monjack a con artist? HBO’s new Brittany Murphy documentary seems into his previous.

“[People] have been scared and freaked out. Like, who was this man and what was taking place?” Murphy’s “King of the Hill” co-star Kathy Najimy remembers within the doc. “She needed to marry him, and I stated, ‘Honey, it’s not been lengthy sufficient.’ ”

Filmmaker Allison Burnett remembers first assembly Monjack at a cocktail party in 1999 the place he lied about proudly owning 17 Ferraris, relationship Madonna and surviving terminal mind most cancers because of an experimental therapy involving shark fins. It was obvious, Burnett says, that he was utilizing the lady he was relationship on the time for her cash. Years later, when Burnett noticed that he was concerned with Murphy, he was horrified.

“I couldn’t consider that this bottom-feeding sociopath had really labored his approach up the meals chain to somebody who’s really a reputable artist,” the filmmaker says within the present. 

Burnett went as far as to name her company, making an attempt to get them to emphasize to Murphy that Monjack was a compulsive liar, however, he says, “The phrase coming again was that her supervisor had tried [doing that] and had gotten fired in consequence.” 

Regardless of the numerous involved folks, Murphy wed Monjack in 2007. Monjack reportedly went to nice efforts to hide his shady previous from his new bride.

Rising Hollywood starlet Brittany Murphy in 2006.
Rising Hollywood starlet Brittany Murphy in 2006, the 12 months she struck up her ill-fated relationship with Simon Monjack.
Tracey Nearmy/EPA/Shutterstock

Elizabeth Ragland was engaged to him earlier than he was concerned with Murphy and says he manipulated and remoted her, claiming he had most cancers in order that she’d get pregnant, then refusing to get her medical assist when she wanted it. Within the documentary, Ragland says he threatened to remove their son if she revealed herself to Murphy. 

“The stakes have been rather a lot greater with him being married to Brittany,” she says. “He didn’t want anyone to know that I used to be on the market along with his son. I do know why Brittany selected Simon. He labored his spell on her and he or she fell for it, like I did.”

Murphy’s once-thriving profession slowed after the wedding, as rumors swirled round city that Monjack made it tough to work along with her. 

Alex Merkin, who directed Murphy within the 2009 movie “Throughout the Corridor,” talks within the doc of pink flags akin to Monjack seeming “out of it” and Murphy exhibiting “Jekyll and Hyde” conduct.

“Brittany would come to set and be in a very good house, after which I’d see her go off with Simon,” he says. “When she got here again, I felt a stark change in her temper.”

Others recall Murphy, as soon as identified for her lovely rounded options, trying more and more skinny and drawn.

A young Brittany Murphy captivated audiences with her breakout role in 1995’s “Clueless,” playing Alicia Silverstone’s hilarious sidekick Tal.
A younger Brittany Murphy captivated audiences along with her breakout function in 1995’s “Clueless,” enjoying Alicia Silverstone’s hilarious sidekick Tai.

“She wasn’t herself. She was in a lot ache,” make-up artist Trista Jordan, who labored on what can be Murphy’s ultimate movie, “One thing Depraved,” says within the doc. “[Her eyes] have been so sunken, and he or she simply appeared so unhappy.”

“I didn’t acknowledge her anymore,” provides Najimy. “Brittany was cloudy and gone.” 

Ragland says her weight reduction could have been led to by Monjack, who “cherished anorexic ladies.” 

Ed Winter, the coroner who dealt with Murphy’s case, and health worker Lisa Scheinin speculate that tragedy may need been prevented if somebody had taken Murphy to the hospital within the days main as much as her loss of life. 

Brittany Murphy stands against a white wall, clad in a white outfit with her hands on her head, looking solemn.
HBO Max’s new documentary examines Brittany Murphy’s tragic and stunning passing, and her life.
Tracey Nearmy/EPA/Shutterstock

“The reason for loss of life isn’t a thriller. The thriller is, why didn’t any individual catch it? Had they taken her to the physician a number of days earlier than, she would nonetheless be alive,” says Winter, who provides that he acquired data that Monjack made a behavior of holding Murphy up late into the night time, to devastating impact. 

“She wasn’t getting sufficient relaxation and her immune system was dropping,” he says. 

Ragland believes her ex is responsible. 

“Even when he didn’t kill Brittany Murphy, he allowed her to die as a result of he didn’t get her to the physician and get her assist,” she says. 

A young Brittany Murphy smiles and waves to the camera.
Brittany Murphy discovered success early, with stints on exhibits akin to “Sister Sister” and “Boy Meets World.” Pals and co-stars say she was bubbly and type.

After Murphy’s loss of life, issues obtained weirder. Monjack tried to stop an post-mortem on her and requested his late spouse’s contacts for hundreds of {dollars} for a “basis” in her honor. 

Murphy’s mom, Sharon, had lived with the couple and continued residing with Monjack after her daughter’s loss of life. When Ryland visited the house, she says it appeared the 2 have been sharing a mattress and the older lady behaved fairly oddly. 

“She acted submissive with him, which I observed, and it struck a chord. [I wondered] ‘What occurs when nobody is right here, how do they act when nobody is right here?’” she remembers.

A blonde Brittany Murphy gazes pensively at the camera resting her face on her hands.
Brittany Murphy went blond as she tried to form herself into what Hollywood within the early 2000s needed, based on a brand new documentary in regards to the star’s life and loss of life.
Cliff Watts / trunkarchive.com

Then, in Could 2010, simply 5 months after Murphy’s loss of life, Monjack died on the age of 40, additionally seemingly as a consequence of pneumonia — and, probably, medication. 

“On Simon’s facet of the nightstand, we discovered roughly 90 prescription bottles, with a number of totally different names, which is very uncommon,” remembers Winter of a subsequent investigation. “We additionally discovered prescription bottles in Brittany’s identify and ‘Lola Manilow,’ [which was] probably an alias.” 

Conspiracy theories abound. Murphy’s estranged father, Angelo Bertolotti, claimed his daughter had been poisoned. On the time, Sharon attributed the younger couple’s loss of life to mould in their mansion. However health worker Scheinin stated she noticed no proof of that. 

Ragland thinks Monjack may need most popular loss of life over the reality being revealed.

She says: “He would slightly be useless than to be found because the con artist he was.”

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