32-year-old actress reportedly went into cardiac arrest
Brittany Murphy died Sunday morning, sources confirm after reports surfaced on gossip Web site TMZ.com. She was 32.
The report cites multiple sources claiming that she went into cardiac arrest and was pronounced dead at Cedars Sinai Medical Center.
Cedars-Sinai Medical Center spokeswoman Sally Stewart told the Associated Press that Murphy died at 10:04 a.m. Sunday. She would not provide a cause of death or any other information.
The Los Angeles Fire Department responded to a call at 8 a.m. Sunday from a home that is listed as belonging to British screenwriter Simon Monjack, who is married to Murphy, spokesman Devon Gale said. Gale said one person was transported to a hospital.
Los Angeles police have opened an investigation into Murphy’s death, officer Norma Eisenman said Sunday afternoon. Investigators have been dispatched to Murphy’s home in the hills of West Hollywood.
Messages left for Murphy’s manager, agent and publicist by the Associated Press weren’t immediately returned.
Born Nov. 10, 1977, in Atlanta, Murphy grew up in New Jersey and later moved with her mother to Los Angeles to pursue acting.
Her career started in the early 1990s with small roles in television series, commercials and movies. She is best known for parts in “Clueless,” “Girl, Interrupted” and “8 Mile.”
Murphy’s voice also gave life to numerous animated characters, including Luanne Platter on more than 200 episodes of Fox’s “King of the Hill” and Gloria the penguin in the 2006 feature “Happy Feet.”
Although she encountered career problems in recent years, she nevertheless kept working in low-budget indie projects and TV films. This past year, she was seen in the Lifetime movie “Tribute” and the Syfy movie “Megafault” and the indie thrillers “Across the Hall” and “Deadline,” the latter of which was just released on DVD.
She’d been at work on several movies scheduled for 2010 release: “Abandoned,” in which she stars opposite Dean Cain; “Something Wicked”; and Sylvester’s Stallone’s “The Expendables,” by far her highest-profile project in recent years.
She was to have filmed “The Caller” in Puerto Rico, but as the project was getting under way last month, she was replaced by Rachelle Lefevre of the “Twilight” series amid press reports — denied at the time by Murphy’s publicist — that Murphy had been fired.
Her role in “8 Mile” led to more recognition, Murphy said told AP in 2003.
“That changed a lot,” she said. “That was the difference between people knowing my first and last name as opposed to not.”
Murphy credited her mother, Sharon, with being a key to her success.
“When I asked my mom to move to California, she sold everything and moved out here for me,” Murphy said. “I was really grateful to have grown up in an environment that was conducive to creating and didn’t stifle any of that. She always believed in me.”
She dated Ashton Kutcher, who co-starred with Murphy in 2003′s romantic comedy “Just Married.”
Kutcher sent a message on Twitter on Sunday morning about Murphy’s death: “2day the world lost a little piece of sunshine,” Kutcher wrote. “My deepest condolences go out 2 Brittany’s family, her husband, & her amazing mother Sharon.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.