Brittany Anne Murphy-Monjack (November 10, 1977 – December 20, 2009),Brittany Anne Murphy was born in Atlanta, Georgia, on November 10, 1977.Her parents, Sharon Kathleen Murphy and Angelo Joseph Bertolotti,divorced when she was two years old, and Murphy was raised by her mother in Edison, New Jersey, where she attended Edison High School. Bertolotti was sufficiently estranged from the family that he was not named as the father on the first death certificate. The family later moved to Los Angeles so that Murphy could pursue an acting career.Murphy said her mother never tried to stifle her creativity, and she considered her mother a crucial factor in her later success: "When I asked my mom to move to California, she sold everything and moved out here for me. ... She always believed in me."Murphy's mother is of Irish and Eastern European descent and her father is Italian American. She was raised a Baptist and later became a non-denominational Christian.She had two older half-brothers and a younger half-sister.
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Brittany Murphy attended Verne Fowler School of Dance and Theatre Arts in Colonia, New Jersey, in 1982. At the age of four, she continued to train in singing, dancing, and acting until her move to California at 13.Murphy made her Broadway debut in 1997, as Catherine, in a revival of Arthur Miller's A View From The Bridge opposite veteran actors Anthony LaPaglia and Allison Janney.Murphy landed her first job in Hollywood when she was 13, starring as Brenda Drexell in the series Drexell's Class. She then went on to play Molly Morgan in the short-lived The Torkelsons spinoff Almost Home. Murphy also guest-starred on several television series, including Parker Lewis Can't Lose, Blossom, seaQuest 2032, Murder One and Frasier. She also had recurring roles on Sister, Sister; Party of Five and Boy Meets World.
Murphy starred in several films, including Clueless (1995); Girl, Interrupted (1999); Drop Dead Gorgeous (1999); Don't Say a Word (2001); the TV adaptation of the novel The Devil's Arithmetic (2001); 8 Mile (2002) and Uptown Girls (2003) as well as many lesser-known films, such as Spun (2002). In 2003, she starred in the romantic comedies Just Married and Little Black Book (2004) and the critically acclaimed Sin City (2005). She starred in two Edward Burns films: Sidewalks of New York (2001) and The Groomsmen (2006). Film critic Roger Ebert acclaimed her acting talent, giving good reviews to several of her films and comparing her to Lucille Ball.In 2009, she was cast in the Lifetime TV movie, Tribute, as the main character, Cilla. She was set to appear in the Sylvester Stallone film, The Expendables, which was released in August 2010.
Murphy was also a voice actor. She voiced the character Luanne Platter on the FOX animated sitcom King of the Hill for the entirety of the show's run from 1997 to 2009, and Joseph Gribble until season 5. She also provided the voice for Gloria the penguin in the 2006 feature Happy Feet. She was nominated for an Annie Award for voice acting in the King of the Hill episode "Movin' On Up".Murphy completed her last film, the thriller/drama Abandoned, in June 2009, released in 2010.In November 2009, Murphy left the production of The Caller, which was being filmed in Puerto Rico, and was replaced by Rachelle Lefevre. Murphy denied media reports that she had been fired from the project after being difficult on set, and cited "creative differences".
At 08:00 (16:00 GMT) on December 20, 2009, the Los Angeles Fire Department responded to "a medical request"at the Los Angeles home Murphy and Monjack shared. She had apparently collapsed in a bathroom.Firefighters attempted to resuscitate Murphy on the scene. She was transported to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, where she was pronounced dead on arrival at 10:04 after going into cardiac arrest.Shortly after her death, Assistant Chief Coroner Ed Winter told the Associated Press: "It appears to be natural."An autopsy was performed on December 21, 2009. Her death certificate listed the cause of death as "deferred".On February 4, 2010, the Los Angeles County coroner stated that the primary cause of Murphy's death was pneumonia, with secondary factors of iron-deficiency anemia and multiple drug intoxication. On February 25, 2010, the coroner released a report stating that Murphy had been taking a range of over-the-counter and prescription medications, with the most likely reason being to treat a cold or respiratory infection. These included "elevated levels" of hydrocodone, acetaminophen, L-methamphetamine (this is an OTC nasal medication, not the more well known D-methamphetamine which is a psychostimulant) and chlorpheniramine. All of the drugs were legal and the death was ruled to be an accident, but the report observed: "the possible adverse physiological effects of elevated levels of these medications cannot be discounted, especially in her weakened state."Murphy was buried at Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills on December 24, 2009.