It’s been over a decade since Brittany Murphy’s sudden death, but many questions about the tragedy remain unanswered.
While we may never understand exactly why the star and her husband, Simon Monjack, strangely died from similar causes just five months apart in 2009 and 2010, a new HBO Max docuseries is sharing more chilling details about the star’s final days — and some curiously sketchy facts about Monjack, whom the project’s director describes as a “disturbed individual.”
In the Blumhouse Television-produced show, What Happened, Brittany Murphy?, Monjack’s curious past is explored thanks to interviews with his mother, Linda; brother, James; and his former fiancée Elizabeth Ragsdale, who spills major tea by claiming the producer lied to her about who he was!
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According to Ragsdale, she and Monjack got engaged relatively early in their relationship. She became pregnant shortly after and Monjack apparently insisted she give birth in the US. So he bought her a plane ticket to New York when she was four months pregnant and told her he would meet her there — only, Monjack didn’t come with her. She recalled in the doc:
“When I got to my little studio in New York, I called him and he answered. I said, ‘Simon, I’ve made it to …’ and before I could get that sentence out, he hung up on me. He left me pregnant and abandoned.”
What Happened, Brittany Murphy? director Cynthia Hill described Monjack as a conman, sharing:
“He was a disturbed individual who was used to conning people and Brittany was one of his last victims. There was a pattern of behavior that became very obvious the more research that we did.”
Months after her passing, LA County Coroner Asst. Chief Ed Winter concluded Murphy’s death was the result of untreated pneumonia, combined with anemia and drug intoxication from prescription and over-the-counter medications, including painkillers and cold medicine. No illegal drugs were found in her system.
In the months leading up to her death, the star’s declining health did not go unnoticed by her colleagues. Makeup artist Trista Jordan, who appears in the documentary and worked with Murphy on the star’s last film, 2009’s Something Wicked, said she was startled by Murphy’s appearance in her final months. She recalled:
“Her eyes were so sunken, and she just seemed so sad. She wasn’t herself. She was in so much pain. She had Bambi legs and couldn’t stand up.”
What Happened, Brittany Murphy? executive producer Buddy Day noted that while the circumstances of the actress’ death were “bizarre,” everyone the production spoke to mentioned the importance of remembering Murphy’s kindness. Hill noted:
“Everyone was so consistent when they would describe her. She was so generous, caring and always thinking about everybody else and I think sometimes that gets forgotten because of all the mystery surrounding her death. She was loved by everyone.”
What Happened, Brittany Murphy? premieres on October 14 on HBO Max.
[Image via Daniel Deme/WENN]