LOS ANGELES (AP) — Brittany Murphy, who gained fame in such movies as “8 Mile” and “Just Married” before giving voice to popular animated characters, has died at age 32.
The Los Angeles County coroner’s office said her death Sunday morning at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center appeared to be from natural causes but police were investigating.
Murphy was transported to the hospital after the Los Angeles Fire Department responded to a call at 8 a.m. at the home she shared with her husband, British screenwriter Simon Monjack, in the Hollywood Hills.
Assistant Chief Coroner Ed Winter said Murphy apparently collapsed in the bathroom, and authorities were looking into her medical history.
An official cause of death may not be determined for some time, since toxicology tests will be required, but “it appears to be natural,” Winter said. He said an autopsy was planned for Monday or Tuesday.
Los Angeles police have opened an investigation into Murphy’s death, Officer Norma Eisenman said. Detectives and coroner’s officials were at Murphy and Monjack’s home Sunday afternoon but did not talk to reporters. Paparazzi were camped outside the multistory home, located above the Sunset Strip.
Neighbor Clare Staples said she saw firefighters working to resuscitate the actress Sunday morning. She said Murphy was on a stretcher.
Murphy’s husband, wearing pajama bottoms and no shoes, appeared “dazed” as firefighters tried to save her, Staples said. “It’s just tragic,” she added.
TMZ.com first reported Murphy’s death Sunday morning.
Murphy’s publicist, Nicole Perna, said in a statement: “In this time of sadness, the family thanks you for your love and support. It is their wish that you respect their privacy.”
Messages left for Murphy’s manager and agent by The Associated Press were not immediately returned.
Murphy’s father, Angelo Bertolotti, said he learned of her death from his son, the actress’s brother, and was stunned.
“She was just an absolute doll since she was born,” Bertolotti said from his Florida home. “Her personality was always outward.
Everybody loved her — people that made movies with her, people on a cruise — they all loved her. She was just a regular gal.”