Brittany Murphy’s shocking and tragic 2009 death at just 32 years old was the end of a brief life and a rapidly rising career. Officially, the coroner ruled anemia and pneumonia as the cause of her death, but questions have long swirled around the mysterious circumstances that led up to her collapse in her home in Hollywood. Now, a new two-part documentary aims to shed a little light on the case. Here’s the log line:
A captivating actress as effervescent on-screen as she was off, Murphy was a rising star whose movies helped define a generation. But in 2009, Murphy’s untimely passing ended her promising career, while the mysterious circumstances surrounding her death quickly became fodder for speculation and conspiracy theories.
Featuring new archival footage and interviews with those closest to her, What Happened, Brittany Murphy? goes beyond the tabloid rumors to examine the impact of Hollywood’s sexism on her struggles, as well as lingering concerns about her relationship with husband Simon Monjack, it continues. Sensitive and nuanced, the docuseries explores the legacy of a unique talent.
As the star of movies like 8 Mile; Girl, Interrupted and her breakout hit Clueless, Murphy was one of a handful of winsome young teen actors who seemed set to be a ubiquitous film presence for the rest of their lives. The documentary is set to explore not just the lingering questions around her passing, but the industry pressure that took a toll on her wellbeing and how that pressure may have made her vulnerable to exploitation by her husband. The docu-series will debut next week on HBO.