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HindustanTimes Sat,30 Aug 2014

Hollywood's deadly drug addiction

Hindustantimes.com  New Delhi, February 03, 2014
First Published: 20:13 IST(3/2/2014) | Last Updated: 11:59 IST(4/2/2014)

Drug overdose has been a common cause of death for many Hollywood actors and singers. As the news of Academy award winning actor Philip Seymour Hoffman's sudden death in his house due to an apparent drug overdose sent shockwaves across the globe, we look at 10 such celebrities who met the same fate.

Michael Jackson: The legendary singer died of an acute drug intoxication on June 25, 2009. He was preparing for his comeback concert series titled This Is It. Dr Conrad Murray , his personal physician was convicted of involuntary manslaughter.

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The singer, lovingly called MJ by his fans, dominated the charts in the 1980s and is considered one of the most successful entertainers of the past century, with a lifetime sales tally estimated at 750 million records, 13 Grammy Awards and several seminal music videos to his name.

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Whitney Houston:
The 48-year-old singer who dominated the pop music world with her soaring voice was found dead in a Beverly Hills hotel room. She died on the eve of the Grammy Awards (2012) in Los Angeles. Overdose of cocaine and other drugs were said to be the cause of her death.

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Heath Ledger
: In 2008, Heath Ledger, who was best known as the Joker of Batman, and was acclaimed for his role as a gay cowboy in the film Brokeback Mountain, was found dead in his Manhattan apartment. The possible cause of his death was drug overdose. The Australian-born Ledger, 28, was found face down and naked at the foot of the bed by a housekeeper at his apartment in the SoHo neighborhood. He was pronounced dead at the scene but no cause had been determined.

Marilyn Monroe: The greatest style icon and screen sex symbol was discovered dead in her Brentwood bedroom by her psychiatrist. According to the coroner, Marilyn died as a result of "acute barbiturate poisoning" and "probable suicide."

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Kurt Cobain: The Nirvana frontman died in 1994 at his Lake Washington home. His body was spotted by an electrician who had arrived to install a security system. Though the singer left a suicide note, a high concentration of heroin and traces of diazepam were also found in his body.

Jim Morrison: Legendary singer, songwriter and poet Jim Morrison died on July 3, 1971, at the age of 27. He was found in a Paris apartment bathtub. The singer apparently died of a heroin overdose.

Judy Garland: The singer-actress was found dead in the bathroom of her fifth husband's rented house in London in 1969. She was 47. She died because of the unintentional overdose of barbiturates.

Elvis Presley: The King of Rock and Roll, 42, died on August 16, 1977. He died of cardiac arrhythmia, that had caused his heart to beat irregularly and was on an overdose of prescription drugs, including codeine, valium, morphine, and Demerol.

Anna Nicole Smith: Playboy model and reality TV star Anna Nicole Smith was found unresponsive at a hotel in Hollywood. She was rushed to hospital by her friends, but was pronounced dead on arrival. Her death was apparently due to combined drug intoxication.

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Jimi Hendrix: Guitarist Jimi Hendrix died in 1970 of a drug overdose. He was arrested in 1969 for possession of heroin, but was later acquitted.

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