Acting : RIP Philip Seymour Hoffman. The Master is dead. by Christopher Binder

Christopher Binder

RIP Philip Seymour Hoffman. The Master is dead.

What's your favorite memory of him? Can be a role he took in a movie, on stage, something he said etc. I personally thought he did his best work whenever he teamed up with Paul Thomas Anderson. He always looked and felt like such a friendly, easy going person. So sad and shocked he is gone now. Another one of the greats taken before their time.

Trev Lewis

I know, what a complete shock and a waste of talent. Will be a large void left in film from here on.

Philip Sedgwick

God Speed, Philip Seymour Hoffman. I loved State and Main (and of course, Capote).

Trev Lewis

I think the first time I saw him was Boogie Nights, then in one of my favourite films The Big Lebowski, but the guy just seemed to strike gold no matter what role he played. A crying shame

Bill Shannon

The 25th Hour. It was the first movie I saw him in that made me stop and think that he's going to do some amazing work in the future. Can't forget his character in 'Twister' too.

Janet Caulfield

I am too saddened for words. One of my fav's was his role as the detective in The Talented Mr. Ripley....he was brilliant!

D Marcus

A drug overdose? I have sympathy for his family and friends. I have nothing but anger for him if that is the case. Such talent.

Simon © Simon

He was the actor who made "I sharted" famous!

Bernice Policastro

Great Actor in any role he played. It's a damn shame he had to struggle with this addiction. May he rest in peace!

Trev Lewis

It seems strange to me that these actors get to the place that many of strive to reach and yet there's something so empty an unfulfilling in their life that they have to turn to drugs! Shame

Lorilyn Bailey

Trev Lewis, he became addicted while in college, long before his incredible success. He's from my hometown. It's so very sad.

W. Keith Sewell

"Well, you ain't exactly James Bond." " And you ain't exactly Thomas Jefferson either" to paraphrase a line from " Charlie Wilson's War Trev. A great character actor - who doesn't deserve to have his character being assassinated by the media or public at this time. My condolescences to his wife and children.

Trev Lewis

I've just heard the same discussed on the radio Linda. I wasn't judging just trying to get my head around it. Must he very difficult to kick the habit if he still was an addict despite his success. Such a waste

W. Keith Sewell

yeah, I agree... that's one nasty monkey to have on your back.

Rick Jey

Phillip will be missed. Taken too soon but who are we to decide or second guess the power of the creator?

Ric Frost

He may have been a good actor, but apparently not a master as the monkey controlled him. Sad.

Rick Jey

Yes it seems the monkey gains control. I will never understand why people turn to drugs. Personally, I never ever gone there... unless you count coffee or a casual drink of alcohol. Sad situation. I still have not got over River Phoenix.

Simon King

Just wondering... does the public cry and post condolences when a homeless junkie dies in the street? Because... there is no difference. An addict is an addict.

Thomas Bailey

... I don't know many junkies that have inspired / touched nearly as many people all be it through 'characters' and 'performances'. But I get what you're saying.

Rick Jey

If I new when a homeless man/woman died in the street...I would still send my condolences. "Every life has meaning, sad or happy".

Aurora Flores

Heroine has no color, race, sex or economic barriers, it just kills. As we say in the 'hood: tecata mata. "Tecato was a martyr, A victim of the war Obsession was his enemy Possession was his whore." .... aurora flores R.I.P. Philip Seymour Hoffman. www.instagram.com/p/j7ukAmxTMJ/

Rick Jey

Yes, Aurora...you said it well..."tecata" si!

Sebastian Butler II

I first saw him in Mission Impossible 3. But, loved him in Hunger Games. His style will be missed.

Leslie T. Suhayda

I am bewildered by those who work so hard to make it in their chosen profession and are fortunate enough to rise to the top and then turn to drugs only to lose everything. It seems to me you want to protect your accomplishments and strive for meaningful causes to make this world a better place? Not shoot up one last time, what was the journey for? To many celebrities have followed the needle or the nose without using their brain, perhaps their actions will open the eyes of new celebrities and when the drug dealer comes calling, they will tell them to take a hike.

Tim Scanlon

Selfish bastard sticks a needle in his arm when his two little girls are now fatherless. Selfish prick.

Rick Jey

Sad situation!!!

Lorilyn Bailey

Clearly, some people do not understand the complexities of addiction.

Christopher Binder

I will chose to remember him as a wonderful actor, not as a drug addict. Will you?

Rick Jey

I always remember people by their good side and forgive their unfortunate inadequacies. I have lost so many friends to drugs... sad!!!

Rick Jey

Evidently he was feeling inadequate in some way needing more out of life than the high of living and experiencing an insufficient amount of love and acknowledgement of those things that most of us survive on daily as we take the good with the bad. I'm dumbfounded why anyone wants to alter their state of mind in lieu of those highs that are basic human made chemical highs concocted by our own mind and body.

Simon © Simon

To help those of you who do not understand addiction or using. It is something that is very hard to control. There are many things in a persons life that are triggers. Some of you may notice during a ball game as you reach for a beer. To put it at the basics. I know artists who love to drink and paint. Red wine and cigars and two days later a master piece on canvas. Those same people try to stop as they realize in moments of rational that it is not healthy. However the war between health and creativity is a bloody one. He lived his life and maybe he was taken to soon, or a heart attack was right around the corner from that 'inner war' ? Whatever the case, he is gone. Sugar causes Cancer.... if you eat it, are you self destructive or are you only following a craving that you get up, get in your car and go get ? If you eat to much at once it will kill you as will water.... He lived his life and died on top. Better then dieing in a park saying "If only."

Leslie T. Suhayda

Simon, I understand where you are going with your opinion, but, "It is a Crock of SHIT!" to quote Al Pacino from Justice for All. The bottom line is he is an adult, he battled drug addiction from his college days and went into rehab, learning the ramifications of his behavior, He had three children under 10 years old. He had 4 full bags of heroin and 2 partial filled bags along with a trove of prescription drugs, his choice was loud and clear, no sugar coating this one, His decision was heroin over his children. Like it or not that is what he chose and the depression and stupor was a result of his drug addiction not life. He had made it, he could call his shots on which films he wanted to do. I would have preferred him using sugar, as you say, and over time get cancer, at least he would have lived longer. Excuses, Excuses for all the stars, BULLSHIT, they are not exempt from the responsibility and their children and family are the victims of their selfish habit. It is time to find these drug pushers and trust me Phillip had one, catch the SOB and hang him up by his nuts and let him scream in agony, which is 1/10 of what his children are going through.

Rick Jey

Yes, he died on top of the game...but with his boots on complete with the needle that led to it. Who am I to judge, but I get your point. Sugar vs.a killer addictive drug is not a comparative in a cognitive way of thinking. Let's not sugar coat it!!

Lorilyn Bailey

I understand your anger. That was my first response. But clearly you don't understand addiction.

Rick Jey

Thanks Lorilyn. I guess I don't. In the 70's I lost so many friends to drugs. One blew the side of his head off with a 12 gauge shotgun because he was seeing monsters. I went through school...elementary-high school with him. He was fine until introduced to LSD. What was he looking for. Guess, I'm just a hater and somewhat mentally blocked to ever accept that a person has to resort to that sort of weakness level. I will never understand, I guess.

Leslie T. Suhayda

Lorilyn, I know more than the average person, read the project I am undertaking and you may get a glimpse of my knowledge, my family suffered under Russian Communistic rule, every possible atrocity is in this story and human dignity and a term used by Raoul Wallenberg to my mother Iren, was you do what you can do, which makes you a human being everyone else is not. To put this into context this occurrence happened to Iren when she confronted a truly heart breaking moment, seeing a 10 year old Italian little girl with a worse look than the one posted for Phillip Seymor Hoffman at the Caan Festival. and Iren, yelled out to all of the people next to the train, "Does anyone have any food!" and an elderly lady visiting her son at the neighboring air base said, "I have apples." Iren grabbed an apple and gave it to the little girl and saw 50 arms reach around the little girl wanting an apple. The was Raoul point, Human Beings think of others, they do not make excuses, they do what is right and Phillip did not do the right thing, and all those who say at least he went out on top are missing the point as well. He should have been thinking of his 10 year old little girl as my courageous Mother, Iren, did with a stranger's little girl that broke her heart.

Lorilyn Bailey

I spent two weeks behind the Iron Curtain in 1975. (I went with a friend and her family, and they visited family members.) There were food shortages and everything. I was so glad to be able to leave. But guess what? it has nothing to do with addiction. Phillip Seymour Hoffman WAS a human being and made all of our lives richer as a human being. Human beings, even gifted ones, have faults. Of course he did not do the right thing -- when he was in college and made the decision to take drugs. Was he able to kick the addiction? Obviously not. That does not make him bad, evil, or not right. He was an addict.

Leslie T. Suhayda

Lorilyn, Thanks for making my point, "Of course he did not do the right thing" when you decide substance over your family it is a heart breaking thing. Now put yourself in the place of his three children, did they deserve better?

Lorilyn Bailey

Of course they deserved better. I'm sure their father knew that, too.

Rick Jey

Amen Lorilyn.

Leslie T. Suhayda

It seems he made a conscience effort to the contrary, if he knew and chose his daughters he would still be with us.

Leslie T. Suhayda

Ignorance is not an excuse, he knew that with all those years of rehab. In any case I feel for the children and their lives have been changed.

W. Keith Sewell

For them to find that many packets of heroin in his home is devastating - (were his daughters in the same home? I hope he realized how damaging it could have been to them if they had got hold of one. There may have been more than one overdose in the family.) I'm not trying to be funny - seriously, he put their lives in danger. It's sad that he made the drug his "God" and failed to make a connection with the "One True God", until now. Intellects seem to always over-think this connection. Thus allowing our minds to over-power our hearts. I lost my Big Brother to that drug when he went to Nam in '69. I was always curious as to why he took something that had him falling out the chair in a nod. I never understood it. I was curious - but he told me point blank, he'd kick my ass from here to eternity if he ever caught me doing that stuff.

Lorilyn Bailey

Dead horse. Beaten.

Simon King

Lorilyn... agreed.

Christopher Binder

Just remember whenever you point that judgmental finger at somebody else, there will always be 3 fingers pointing back at yourself.

Lorilyn Bailey

Dead horse beaten and buried.

Rick Jey

Lorilyn...I hope so.

Lisa Clemens

He was from my area. He used to show up at his old high school and talk to kids. A lot of people looked up to him. His acting teacher wept. :(

Lisa Clemens

Robert Downey Junior could have gone this way. SO glad he took control!

Lorilyn Bailey

Lisa Clemens, I agree. (Your grandfather's name isn't Bob, is it, by any chance?)

Lisa Clemens

My husband's father was Bob Clemens from Long Island

Lorilyn Bailey

Okay. Wrong one. There was (is) a Kodak photographer in Rochester named Bob Clemens. Thanks.

Chris Livings

Saddened not so much by the films he left behind, but all the great films he won't be making and all the characters I now won't love and won't enjoy watching. Tragic!

Rick Jey

I agree Chris...and thanks for that info Max.

John Vukovic

Magnolia is my favourite.

Rick Jey

Ahhhh, yes! John...Magnolia was so excellent. Thanks for sharing! (Rick Jey)

Beverly Gray

I'll certainly miss his varied and unique performances. Here's my blog post on the subject of Hoffman. I'd welcome responses from his fellow actors. http://bit.ly/1ifQXCN

Chad Glass

He was one of this generation's better actors, more artist than onscreen male model cast to pretend to act. His varied and often strange choices were always fully convincing no matter what he played. I saw him only once in person at Cafe Primo on Sunset Strip one night as he sat at a table next to mine. He was reading something. At a point, he looked at me saying: "Hello. You're very handsome." And I didn't know what to say. I never considered myself that way. I paused and said "thanks" but then nothing else as I wasn't into "celebrity" cultism and let him continue with his business. However my point is that, perhaps, it was his unusual looks that bothered him (among other things). He wasn't Tom Cruise. Yet he didn't need to be. He was a beautiful human being just as he was. As an admirer of his work, I was shocked to hear of his death on Superbowl Sunday. I was actually working with a production designer doing a set drawing. I had no idea he was a heroin addict. And the long stretch of his sobriety made this particularly confusing. Why did he suddenly go back to the needle and end himself? A part of me thinks he wanted to go. But why. We'll never quite know. Mysteries often go with one to their grave. Godspeed, Philip. I wish now I would have talked to you at the cafe. Perhaps we'll talk again someday on the other side....

Christopher Binder

It was reported that Hoffman was celebrating at the wrap party for The Master and he had a drink of alcohol. Then one thing led to another and he fell back into old habits.

Rick Jey

Well said Chad.

Stephen Mitchell

My favorite memory of Philip is the only one I have of him other than seeing his wonderful performances on the screen (my favorite being his contribution to The Big Lebowski). During one of our Elysée Wednesday gatherings on the terrace at Caffe Primo, Philip installed himself at a nearby table; he had just come from a workout at the gym that is located upstairs. He was alone and I couldn't help noticing that he was discreetly showing interest in our group and seemed to be following the conversation which ping-ponged between film topics and Ferrari talk. Stage 32 member Tom Gurnee also took note and went to Philip and invited him to join us. Philip thanked Tom but declined saying that he was about to have a meeting with someone who had yet to arrive. Sure enough, he was joined a few minutes later and their meeting took over his attention, however, not before another Stage 32 member, Jeanetta Dumouchel, also had a word with Philip and came away with a photograph. A brief but pleasurable encounter.

Stephen Nagy

"Red Dragon" & "25th Hour".

Chad Glass

In reply to: "Christopher Binder: It was reported that Hoffman was celebrating at the wrap party for The Master and he had a drink of alcohol. Then one thing led to another and he fell back into old habits." To my knowledge he was found dead in his own bathroom. If he was partying hard that would assume, then, that he went back to his flat after the party (?), shot up, and died alone?

Stephen Jackson

For me, I enjoyed "Capote", "Charlie Wilson's War" and "The Ides of March". "Capote" especially because I had read "In Cold Blood" and I felt that Hoffman nailed the character and mind set of Truman Capote.

Marc Sigoloff

I would rather talk about his great achievements as an actor. Hoffman gave some of his best performances in some lesser known films that slipped by. In Love Liza he was a man trying to deal with his wife's suicide. No, the film isn't that morbid. Hoffman is completely daffy and very funny. Another great one is Owning Mahoney, in which he is an assistant bank manager who embezzles money to go on gambling sprees. He also starred in the final film of the great director Sidney Lumet, Before the Devil Knows You're Dead. It ranks with Lumet's best, but people stayed away. It's amazing how many great performances he gave in a relatively short period of time.

John Vukovic

Before the Devil Knows You're Dead was great. I don't know why people stayed away.

Chad Glass

Probably because the name of the film was too long and obtuse.

Rick Jey

I always thought of it that way too, Chad. Maybe it will be ressurrectd .

Marc Sigoloff

If the critics had given it the support it deserved it could have overcome the obtuse title. Maybe with that the studio would have supported it with a decent release. It never played where I live.

Chad Glass

It is my experience that a film's title will weigh heavily in its viewership. The problem with "Devil" is that the title attempted to be too clever when it really just confused and turned people off. Attention spans and mindsets of moviegoers are both fickle and extremely short. It's amazing that anyone actually sits through a movie anymore. Names like "Jaws" and "Star Wars"--they're extremely self-contained as also describe the movie itself without any vagueness. As I write this I don't even remember the name of the "Devil" film that Philip was in. I'm guilty as charged--ADD and uninterested. I'm only interested in it because he died and some of you have said it's a good film. In fact I never even heard of that movie until this thread started. With media noise and narrow-casting the norm, films like that, too, fall through the cracks. These are my opinions.

Chad Glass

Marc, yes, that is another phenomenon: limited release. Films like "Devil' are probably not widely appealing or thought to be by the distributors. So they will release it to limited audiences and will only show it for a very short time. The film then sinks to the bottom of the pile to be discovered years later by "cult fans." Then people begin talking about it. Not all films are made in the best conditions for the times. There are music acts, for example, that I have become interested in years after some of the members have already died.

Beverly Gray

Before the Devil Knows You're Dead is a really excellent movie, the last directed by the great Sidney Lumet. It has some things in common with American Hustle, but is far darker -- and the cast (also featuring Ethan Hawke, Alfred Finney, and Marisa Tomei) is brilliant. But you're right about the title. I'd barely heard of it before I spotted it on the shelf in my local library. And when I tell people about this film, I never quite got it straight.

Chad Glass

See :) Trying to be too clever will lose many. But let's look another example, one involving a short title--yet another attempt at being too clever or cool but is actually just plain dumb: "Gigli." Remember that? The Bennifer movie? When I saw that on billboards in LA I said to myself "Gigli? What the hell is that? How do you say that? But wait... it has Ben Affleck and Jay Lo in it! Eeewwww gross! A dumb title for a film that is probably stupid, too. I will never see that film." And I never saw it. Would you want to voluntarily watch a film called "Gigli" with Ben Affleck in it?

Marc Sigoloff

I voluntarily watched Gigli, and it isn't the horrible mess its reputation would have believe. I always try to keep an open mind about any movie and look past the hype, whether it is positive or negative. Just remember The Shining, one of the most highly regarded horror films, was nominated for numerous Razzie awards when it was released.

Christopher Binder

Something tells me that Gigli will not be considered a film ahead of it's time.

Chad Glass

I think people are more close-minded and swayed by opinions of others before seeing a movie than is led on. I would bet money that if a film's title is confusing or vague, if the actors are not to your liking, if the film is too obscure and limited of a run, if friends' talk indicates a movie is only worth watching for $1.00--then minds will close down and the film will not be seen. Once I saw the title for "Gigli" and then the lead actors in it my mind shut off and I had no desire to see the movie. Even if it's okay, I will never see it.

Nick Dale

He was such an accessible actor. It almost felt as if you knew him because he had an incredible ability to connect to the inner worlds of so many different people..a true empath. My faves are Doubt and Capote.

Rick Jey

I really liked him in Doubtm

Chad Glass

He was great in "Synecdoche, New York."

Nikita Ivanenko

My favorites with him are Big lebowski, The boat that rocked and The Master.

L.M. Butler

I bought the movie "Flawless" this week. He is so wonderful in that movie! Didn't know he was the father of three kids!

Mark Burchard

I had the pleasure of working with Phillip on FLAWLESS and I watched him go head to head with De Niro every day for 10 weeks. Now that was something to watch! I was also amazed to see Phillip vanish into the character of a drag queen. I have the same impression today as I had back then, Phillip was a male version of Meryl Streep who I have also watched work in 4 films. Phillip proved his genius in CAPOTE and Meryl showed her chops as Sophie and as Thatcher. To have watched these two great actors work was an astonishing gift. To know I will never have the chance to watch Phillip again is heart breaking. Thank you Phillip for allowing me to watch your genius unfold before the camera. RIP and God Bless.

P.J. Corvus

Some good advice for actors would be to stay away from drugs

Steven Molony

I loved the article that Aaron Sorkin wrote regarding the manner of Philip Seymour Hoffman's death; stating that it was not a heroin overdose that killed him, just heroin as a drug. As an addict himself, he sees that people focus on the wrong things, in that they say he died because he took too much of it, rather than realizing this was a battle he fought for over 20 years until his eventual defeat. He was hiding his drugs and his violent relapse in an apartment he rented as an office, because it was his intention to get it under control again. Additionally, he hid it there in an effort to protect his children from the potential exposure of the drug. That some people think he chose heroin over his children and career is a shame. If it was as simple and black-and-white as making a choice, he'd still be with us. He chose to take the first hit two decades ago, but after that point, he fought against it as hard as he could. He won for such a long time, but unfortunately, once you've become an addict, your best case scenario is that you will live the rest of your life as a recovering addict, because the cravings will always be there. I'm saddened that people can't seem to speak of his death without commenting on the way in which it happened. Seeing the lack of empathy for a man as human and flawed (as proven in any of his performances) as any of us just compels me to counter the vitriol with understanding. I'm not defending drug abuse, I'm just saying addiction is far more difficult to live with than people who have never experienced it realize. So there's my two cents, however futile the affect. He was one of my all-time favorite actors. He never missed. I'm so saddened by his loss and by the fact that he will never again be able share his exceptional artistry with us. May he rest in peace.

Stephen Mitchell

An excellent point--any amount heroin is an overdose...

Mark Burchard

P.J. Corvus, you are absolutely correct but the problem is much bigger than that. Many stars surround themselves with a bunch of yes-men. These people are leeches who never call an actor out for bad behavior and that can lead to unimaginable tragedies. Think of Whitney, Michael, and John Belushi. I worked with John for 3 years and nobody reprimanded him for drug use. People kissed his butt. Now they have regrets and dreams of what could have been… the same kind of dreams that all of Phillips fans are having now. That's not to say that was the case for Phillip because I really don't know his circumstances. All I can say is, RIP!

Rick Jey

I agree Stephen Mitchell and you are so correct Mark Burchard.

John Edgerton

Remembrances of Philip Seymour Hoffman a Master of His Craft! I was fortunate as well to have worked with Phillip Seymour Hoffman when he was but a rising star and long before he had an Academy Award on his mantel. When approaching film, Phil had a hungry gleam in his eye and a gift for the art that was truly amazing! As a prolific actor of immeasurable proportion, he immersed himself in his character and drew upon the whimsical and dark side of himself to craft a truly believable personae. He was an incredible actor! As a person, he was brilliant, cordial, friendly and had a really great sense of humor. He could be moody sometimes but was very likeable. It was a great privilege to watch him grow as an actor from his smaller roles, to the academy award winning role of Truman Capote in "Capote", followed by the sadistic character of Owen Davian in "Mission Impossible III" . I will miss watching his incredible work!

Leslie T. Suhayda

I strongly believe the log line and the title go hand in hand. The paying public reads the log lines and titles, then decide as couples or groups where they will spend their money. If either the Log line or Title is lacking, does not catch their curiosity it will be past up, even if they have a top name actor. The Title stirs interest and the log line sells the film. Before a decision is made on a title, they should run it by the public for their feedback, will it accomplish the goal of selling the film?

Simon King

@leslie... "The paying public reads the log lines" Really? I doubt 1% of the paying public can tell a logline from a line of logs. They may read the marketing tag line on the one sheets but they never even see the logline.

Leslie T. Suhayda

When the public reads the Title and then reads on, It's about a guy or gal who ... This introduction gives the public who attends the shows an understanding of what the movie is about just like when you are pitching your screenplay to producers. Short and sweet, what is it about? The Title draws the movie goers in, and the decision is made to see or not see by the public.

Alex J Campbell

I actually really liked him in 'Twister'

Chad Glass

lol "Twister." I saw that film but had forgotten about it. He played the science geeky guy (I think).

Chad Glass

Leslie, I think the first Pavlovian reaction to a movie poster is the title of the film and the actors faces. And then friends begin telling others about the film and that either has more people going to the movie or the film sinks. Once I saw "Gigli" on a billboard I had already decided to never see it. I didn't even care what it was about. The name was dumb and the actors were not attractive to me. Years later I saw some brief scenes from the film and was glad I didn't waste 90 minutes of life seeing it. Similar to "Vanilla Sky." For a time that was on billboards all around LA and I instantly decided to never see it. I didn't know what it was about and never wanted to see it. Even if it was good that didn't matter. Tom Cruise's face and the dumb title turned me off.

Mark Burchard

FYI Phillip had two films in the can. One Armed Man is in post as is The Hunger Games:Mockingjay Part I. Part 2 is still shooting. I don't know if he had finished work on that project or not.

Marc Sigoloff

Simon is absolutely right. Most people never see loglines. People go to the movies they hear the most about. This is the result of advertising, word of mouth and the reporting of the box-office receipts. Most people will go only to the movies that everyone else are seeing. If it isn't in the top five at the box-office the opening weekend they don't even notice. This is one of the reasons it is harder to sell small movies to general audiences. Back in the 70s before the box-office grosses became weekly news small movies did better. People actually had to take more initiative in researching what movies were playing.

Simon King

Gotta add Marc! I mean, come on... anytime someone says I am "absolutely right" that deserves my attention.

Leslie T. Suhayda

Marc not entirely true, Independent films have in some cases out performed studio films and the surveys show title and movie guide go hand in hand, independent movies have small budgets and it is extremely important to do the due diligence with title and over view of the film to catch the eye of the public and yes public word of mouth enters into it's success and their are many examples proving this point.

Marc Sigoloff

The few exceptions do not override the general rule. Most people do not go to independent films, but of course occasionally a few will break through. Even so they rarely experience the same level of grosses as the major studio productions.

L.M. Butler

Hoffman was an actor's actor. If he was in a film, I knew the film would be better because of his presence in it, no matter how small or large the role or the movie. He did it all. Big budget, little budget, stage, television and that's what a true actor is suppose do. It's not always about "money" but about the quality of the work that proves enduring in this business. And Phillip Seymour Hoffman was a quality actor.

Stephen Mitchell

I was fortunate to be a co-producer on Charlie Evans, Jr.'s documentary Addiction Incorporated. The film's principal is Victor DeNoble who, in a very succinct way, explains the mechanism of addiction regardless of the substance: The brain creates a chemical that tells us that all is well providing a general sense of well being. When one takes a drug, be it nicotine, heroin or what have you, the drug begins shouting at you that EVERYTHING IS GREAT with such force and volume that the brain automatically reduces the production of the 'everything's OK' chemical because of all the shouting being done by the drug. Later, when the drug has run out of your system, the volume on your 'everything's OK' chemical is still turned down--or off--and the feeling that we used to have that all is well has disappeared and we gravitate to the drug in an attempt to recover it. This is a simplified explanation you can give to a school child and they will understand the phenomenon of addiction. It does not, however, contemplate the reasons one originally takes the drug.

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