Today we remember the talented actor Philip Seymour Hoffman, who would have celebrated his 50th birthday. The star passed away in February 2014 at the young age of 46.
While Hoffman has passed, his incredible legacy remains. The actor managed to make a lasting impression with small parts like the vulnerable Scotty J. in Boogie Nights and the knowing servant Brandt in The Big Lebowski before landing leading roles of his own. From Capote to The Savages, Charlie Wilson’s War to The Master, this acclaimed star completely transformed for each role, transfixing audiences with his thrilling performances.
Critics seemed to agree: Hoffman took home the Oscar for Best Actor in a Leading Role in 2006 for the crime drama biopic Capote, and was nominated three more times in his extensive film career.
On what would have been his 50th birthday, we’re remembering the talented star with a look back at his most memorable roles, from Boogie Nights in 1997 to The Hunger Games in 2015. Rest in peace, Philip.
1. Boogie Nights
Hoffman plays the vulnerable Scotty J. who worships Mark Wahlberg's character Dirk in this tragic drama about the porn industry in the 1970s. Boogie Nights is just one of five of Paul Thomas Anderson's films that Hoffman has a part in: The director fell in love with Hoffman "at first sight" and even gave a moving eulogy at his funeral.
2. The Big Lebowski
Hoffman had a small part in the Coen brothers' hilarious 1998 hit, but it remains one of his most beloved roles. The acclaimed actor plays the manservant Brandt to Lebowski in the film, and said he still got recognized for the fan-favorite role years later.
3. Almost Famous
The actor convincingly played the wise, older mentor Lester Bangs in the 2000 hit rock band drama which won an Oscar for Best Screenplay.
Hoffman won an Oscar for Best Actor in a Leading Role for his thrilling performance in this biopic, in which he plays writer Truman Capote as he investigates of the case of a murdered Kansas family. In the process of researching his book, Capote forms a relationship with one of the killers on death row.
5. The Savages
The star is one half of a brother-sister team who care for their ailing father in this dramedy. Hoffman stars alongside Oscar-winning actress Laura Linney in the moving flick.
6. Charlie Wilson's War
In yet another Oscar-nominated role, the talented star plays CIA officer Gust Avrakotos alongside Tom Hanks's Charlie Wilson in a dramedy based on the real events during the Soviet-Afghan War. Hoffman proves he can toggle easily between portraying a vulnerable misfit and a trusted companion with this acclaimed part.
Nothing says you've made it like starring alongside Meryl Streep. With Amy Adams also by his side on screen, the Oscar winner nails his portrayal of the questionably-moraled Father Brendan Flynn to Streep's suspicious Sister Aloysius Beauvier in this hard-hitting drama about sexual abuse in the Catholic Church.
8. The Master
Another Hoffman classic, The Master takes on the struggles of soldiers returning home from war. The star plays a religious leader who sways a WWII veteran to his "cause."
9. The Hunger Games
The acclaimed actor joined one of Hollywood's biggest young adult franchises with a role as Plutarch Heavensbee in the second movie in the series, Catching Fire, playing the former Head Gamemaker who reveals that he is actually allied with the rebellion. Hoffman starred in the subsequent installment, Mockingjay—Part 1, and died while filming the next and final film in the series, Mockingjay—Part 2.