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14 Actors You May Not Know Are Dead

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08:30   |   Apr 05, 2016

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  • 14 Actors You May Not Know Are Dead
  • When we watch celebrities at the movies or on TV, we develop special bonds with them.
  • So when they're gone too soon, it can be devastating – especially when we don't realize we've lost them. You
  • may not know some of these actors by name, but you certainly know their faces. Some of
  • your favorite movies or shows feature actors that have been taken from the world well before
  • their time.
  • Lee Thompson Young
  • The Famous Jett Jackson, Lee Thompson Young's star vehicle, was a very popular show on The
  • Disney Channel for some time. Friday Night Lights, Akeelah and the Bee, and The Hills
  • Have Eyes II are some of the few films on Young's impressive resume. But while working
  • as a series regular on Rizzoli and Isles, he was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder. Sadly,
  • on August 19, 2013, his life came to a tragic end after he committed suicide with a self-inflicted
  • gunshot wound.
  • Brittany Murphy
  • After rising to fame in 1995's cult classic Clueless with the famous line "You're a virgin
  • who can't drive," Brittany Murphy offered strong performances in Girl Interrupted, Drop
  • Dead Gorgeous, 8 Mile, and Sin City, and had a regular role on the hit animated show King
  • of the Hill. Murphy was the breadwinner of the family, as she cared for her mother, a
  • breast-cancer survivor, and her husband, Simon Monjack, who suffered from frequent seizures
  • and heart troubles. In a surprising turn of events that shocked the world, Murphy was
  • declared dead on December 20, 2009, due to pneumonia, anemia, and multiple drug intoxication.
  • It's unclear whether toxic mold also played a part in her untimely death at age 32, as
  • her husband was found dead in the same house five months later.
  • Heather O'Rourke
  • Best known for playing Carol Anne from the movie Poltergeist, Heather O'Rourke was the
  • sweet young girl that terrified audiences after being sucked into the television set.
  • She was also one of a very small number of original cast members that remained with the
  • movie series until Poltergeist 3. If you've seen the final movie, you will notice Heather's
  • cheeks are very puffy — a reaction to the medication she was taking for Crohn's disease,
  • with which she was misdiagnosed. Tragedy struck when Heather suffered from cardiac arrest
  • in February 1988 while undergoing a surgery for a bowel obstruction at the tender age
  • of 12.
  • Dominique Dunne
  • Sadly, this is another actress from the 1982 film Poltergeist. Many say the film was cursed,
  • as this young actress from the film also met an early demise. Dominique was born into a
  • life of privilege in Santa Monica to a ranching heiress and TV writer and producer Dominick
  • Dunne. Dominique made appearances in the TV shows Chips, Fame, and The Quest. But the
  • same year Poltergeist was released, her deranged ex-boyfriend, John Thomas Sweeney, murdered
  • her in her own driveway in West Hollywood on November 4, 1982.
  • Brad Renfro
  • Skyrocketing to fame at age 11, Brad Renfro made a huge impression on audiences after
  • starring in Joel Schumacher's adaptation of The Client by John Grisham. High profile roles
  • followed, and he made appearances in Sleepers opposite Brad Pitt, Ghost World alongside
  • Scarlett Johansson, and The Informers starring Kim Basinger. Renfro fulfilled the sad destiny
  • of many child actors, plunging into a life of illegal drug use and trouble with the law.
  • After trying to buy drugs from an undercover LA police officer in 2006, Renfro plead no
  • contest to attempted possession of heroin and spent ten days in jail. On January 15,
  • 2008, at 25 years old, Brad Renfro was found dead of an accidental heroin and morphine
  • overdose.
  • Jonathan Brandis
  • With a resume as long as your arm, Jonathan Brandis showed up in Who's the Boss?, Blossom,
  • L.A. Law, Full House, The Wonder Years, and Murder, She Wrote, among tons of others. As
  • a child and teenage star for many years, it seemed like he had no shortage of work. He
  • was 16 when he made Ladybugs, and 17 when he was cast as a teen genius in Steven Spielberg's
  • SeaQuest 2032. When SeaQuest was canceled in 1996, however, the once-plentiful casting
  • offers dried up. Depression soon plagued the young star. He died after sustaining injuries
  • from an attempted suicide via hanging at the age of 27 in Danbury, Connecticut.
  • Dana Plato
  • Playing Kimberly Drummond in the television series Diff'rent Strokes, Dana Plato was catapulted
  • to instant stardom alongside Gary Coleman and Todd Bridges. To cope with the mounting
  • pressures of fame, she often indulged in cocaine and marijuana off-set. Once she became pregnant,
  • however, the network released her from her contract and she began a downward spiral of
  • drugs and alcohol that included work in adult films and a spread in Playboy magazine. Dana
  • moved to Las Vegas where, desperate for cash, she robbed a store for less than $200 and
  • was bonded out of jail by Vegas entertainer Wayne Newton. She died at the age of 35 on
  • May 8, 1999, in her RV in Oklahoma after taking a fatal dose of lortab and valium.
  • Lisa Robin Kelly
  • Kelly made audiences laugh as part of the ensemble cast of That '70s Show, but her real
  • life wasn't funny at all. After a lengthy battle with drug and alcohol addiction that
  • ultimately caused her to lose her job on the show, Kelly checked into rehab in August 2013,
  • only to pass away in her sleep due to complications from an accidental overdose. She was only
  • 43.
  • Thuy Trang
  • Best known for her work as the original Yellow Ranger on Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, Thuy
  • Trang was developing what seemed like a potentially promising career after leaving the show in
  • 1994, landing roles in Spy Hard and The Crow: City of Angels. Sadly, she never had a chance
  • to fulfill that potential — she was killed in a car accident in 2001, at the age of 27.
  • Michael Clarke Duncan
  • Duncan's towering physique made him a natural for "big guy" roles, but he really had dramatic
  • chops — and unlike a lot of actors booked for that type of part, he got a chance to
  • show them. His too-brief filmography includes memorable supporting turns in Armageddon and
  • Daredevil, as well as a beautifully sensitive starring performance in the big-screen adaptation
  • of Stephen King's The Green Mile. Duncan should have had a much longer career, but he was
  • felled by a heart attack in 2012 at the age of 54.
  • Harold Ramis
  • Known best for playing the role of Egon in Ghostbusters, Harold Ramis brought his screenwriting
  • and directing talents to a slew of some of Hollywood's best-loved films, including Caddyshack,
  • Animal House, and Groundhog Day, just to name a few. Ramis was 70 when he passed away from
  • an autoimmune disease in 2014. Though he enjoyed a long and productive career, fans the world
  • over know he was still taken far too soon.
  • Andy Hallett
  • A Buffyverse fan favorite for his work as the demon Lorne in the spinoff series Angel,
  • Andy Hallett seemed to be on the verge of a fruitful career in Hollywood. Unfortunately,
  • he passed away at the age of 33 in 2009, the victim of congestive heart failure.
  • Taylor Negron
  • One of Hollywood's all-time ultimate "That Guy" actors, Negron compiled an impressive
  • list of memorable credits without ever becoming a household name in his own right. Although
  • he tended to be on screen for no more than a few moments at a time, Negron's deadpan
  • delivery made him a standout in pictures like Fast Times at Ridgemont High and Better Off
  • Dead, as well as TV shows like Seinfeld and Friends. He was only 57 when he died in early
  • 2015, a victim of liver cancer.
  • "Rowdy" Roddy Piper After making a name for himself as a professional
  • wrestler, Piper branched out onto the big screen, where he starred in the 1988 cult
  • classic They Live. He's the one who coined the catchphrase, "I have come here to chew
  • bubble gum and kick ass. And I'm all out of bubble gum." That set the tone for a busy
  • Hollywood career full of B-movie roles and small, but unforgettable appearances on shows
  • like It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia. He died in his sleep in 2015 after suffering
  • a pulmonary embolism that triggered a heart attack at the age of 61.
  • Thanks for watching! Subscribe to our YouTube channel to see more videos like the one you
  • just saw. And leave us a comment to tell us your favorite memories of celebs who left
  • us too soon.

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When we watch celebrities at the movies or on TV, we develop special bonds with them. So when they're gone too soon, it can be devastating–especially when we don't realize we've lost them. You may not know some of these actors by name, but you certainly know their faces. Some of your favorite movies or shows feature actors that have been taken from the world well before their time.

Lee Thompson Young | #
Brittany Murphy | #
Heather O'Rourke | #
Dominique Dunne | #
Brad Renfro | #
Jonathan Brandis | #
Dana Plato | #
Lisa Robin Kelly | #
Thuy Trang | #
Michael Clarke Duncan | #
Harold Ramis | #
Andy Hallett | #
Taylor Negron | #
"Rowdy" Roddy Piper | #

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