On Sunday morning, December 20, actress Brittany Murphy was pronounced dead of an apparent cardiac arrest, after she was found collapsed in the shower at her Los Angeles home and rushed to the nearby Cedars-Sinai hospital, where medics unsuccessfully attempted to revive her. While details regarding the exact reason why a 32-year-old woman would suffer a fatal heart attack are still coming in, one thing is certain: Brittany's death is a great loss to both the film and music world.
Brittany made a name for herself playing quirky, eccentric roles--from the goofy skater girl in Clueless, to psych-ward patients in Girl, Interrupted and Don't Say A Word, to even the voice of trailer-park airhead Luann Platter in the animated series King Of The Hill. So it made sense that she crossed over to the edgier music scene--not just in 8 Mile, in which she played Eminem's love interest (aka the "Kim Mathers" role), but as a vocalist in her own right.
And Brittany was one of the few singing actresses to make a credible crossover into music, scoring a club hit in 2006 alongside techno guru Paul Oakenfold (pictured with Brittany above) with the floor-filler "Faster Kill Pussycat":
And while Brittany did not dive full-fledged into a music career, she did prove her vocal and performance chops in occasional appearances, like during this guest spot at a Pussycat Dolls revue, belting out a Bjork song:
She also contributed covers of the Queen anthem "Somebody To Love" and Earth, Wind & Fire's disco classic "Boogie Wonderland" to the Happy Feet soundtrack:
It is sad that such a talent is gone, especially in this tough year that has been filled with the losses of so many showbiz legends. In future years, Brittany may have developed into a fine character actress, and possibly a fine recording artist as well. She will be missed.