It happened at the 2008 Independent Spirit Awards, MC-ed under the Santa Monica big top by Rainn Wilson. As New York Times media critic David Carr recalls via a medium.com blog post, the late Philip Seymour Hoffman displayed a lack of vanity that is unusual among Hollywood types.
Reading the following passage, we thought also of Jack Nicholson on-screen in Terms of Endearment, letting his belly hang out as astronaut Garrett Breedlove. From Carr’s piece:
A gauntlet was thrown and the two men collided mid-room, rolling under tables, grappling for their lives in a ferocious, spontaneous death match. Hoffman had a belly, but the man was not soft — he gave as good as he got, huffing and puffing the whole time.
Somewhere in there, his pants slipped, and he was selling a fair amount of crack. It was not his best feature, but he did not seem to care, instead concentrating on the matter at hand, which was fighting Wilson to a joyous and crowd-pleasing standstill.
Carr, who knows more about wrestling and addiction than a lot of journalists, goes on to offer a touching POV on Hoffman’s robust trajectory. He writes that the actor “got in the ring with his addiction and battled it for two decades successfully, doing amazing film work for years and doing the hard stuff to keep ambitious theater alive in in New York.” Read the rest of the Medium post here.