Brittany Murphy, from "Clueless," whose journey to stardom began as a teenager, did not stick around for long owing to her untimely death, which could have been prevented. After her death, many wondered if her husband, who encouraged her to have plastic surgery, was responsible.
Brittany Murphy was married only once to a man who also worked in the entertainment industry. However, what started as a charming love tale with two private lovers turned out to be fatal.
Long before these two met, the actress welcomed the idea of dating famous faces. She was romantically linked to an actor, Ashton Kutcher, and rapper Eminem.
Brittany Murphy at " 8 Mile " Photocall - Paris at Bristol Hotel on January 15, 2003 | Source: Getty Images
Later on, she dated Joe Macaluso and Jeff Kwatinetz. Her relationship with these two led to engagements, which unfortunately did not last. Brittany's first fiancé was Macaluso, who worked on "Little Black Book" as a production assistant, while Kwatinetz was her second fiancé.
On her third attempt, Brittany finally found the love she chose to settle with. This time, she fell deeply in love with Simon Monjack, an English screenwriter and producer. Their romance metamorphosed into something significant in her life— her first and only marriage.
On the other hand, this was Monjack's second marriage. He had been married to Simone Bienne, whom he divorced in 2006. He was also formerly engaged to Elizabeth Ragsdale, with whom he shared his offspring.
Actress Brittany Murphy posing with husband Simon Monjack | Source: Getty Images
It is not certain when he met Brittany, but Monjack admitted that he saw her onscreen and patiently waited. This implied that the actress was young at the time.
Years later, when they finally decided to continue with their romance, they were smitten with each other. Following the release of HBO Max's "What Happened, Brittany Murphy?" close friends revealed that the film star could not wait to marry him.
Actress Brittany Murphy and husband Simon Monjack at the Monique Lhuillier Fall 2008 fashion show during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Fall 2008 at The Promenade at Bryant Park in New York City | Source: Getty Images
Even though Brittany was overjoyed, her friends thought Monjack was not the perfect fit. They were also worried as the couple had only been dating for a few months, but her mom, Sharon Murphy, agreed. According to her former co-star and pal, Kathy Najimy:
"I think Sharon was for the marriage…we were all scared and freaked out, like, who was this guy and what was happening?"
The couple never announced their engagement (which seemed alien to fans of the "Clueless" star), so very few people knew about their love story. Many were surprised to learn about their wedding, which was also a quiet affair.
Brittany Murphy and husband, Simon Monjack at the Motorola 9th Anniversary Party on 8 November, 2007 in Hollywood California. | Source: Getty Images
A rabbi officiated the ceremony, and only family members were in attendance. After the private wedding, the couple carried on their hush-hush lifestyle; they did not talk about the wedding party and hid photos of their wedding ring.
According to a source, they were "drinking Crown Royal and didn't want photographers to take pictures of their rings because they were making a formal announcement Monday."
However, a few days later, a US Weekly journalist noticed the pair in a Playboy party at the Kentucky Derby flashing Neil Lane wedding bands. It was later confirmed that they chose yellow and white platinum banded diamond cut rings.
BRITTANY MURPHY'S REALITY AS A WIFE
Brittany Murphy at MTVs "TRL" on August 6, 2004 | Source: Getty Images
People close to Brittany talked about the drastic changes in her lifestyle once she became Monjack's wife. These revelations were explored in Cynthia Hill's docuseries on HBO Max.
The "What Happened, Brittany Murphy?" creator also had her reservations about the English screenwriter. Hills believed that he was a "disturbed" man who conned women; sadly, Brittany was a victim.
Brittany Murphy at Tt Collection Pop-Up Party on December 3, 2009 in Los Angeles, California. | Source: Getty Images
Lisa Rieffel, a close buddy to the actress, confessed that as soon as they married, Monjack confined her friend and made her incommunicado with the rest of the world. In her words:
"One day her numbers were changed, no one knew where to find her. Simon took her away. That was it. He made sure no one could get to her."
Najimy said Monjack called the shots and was always in control while using her money. The screenwriter often drove his wife to work and waited for her to finish. Ultimately, access to Brittany became "more and more restrictive."
Brittany Murphy during "Happy Feet" London Premiere - Foyer Arrivals at Empire Leicester Square in London | Source: Getty Images
Unfortunately, Brittany was left on her own to deal with personal struggles. In the early years of her career, she wanted to be seen as perfect and was obsessed with being a leading act. So when she was rejected for a role, the "Clueless" star resorted to aggressively trimming her weight.
In 2005, she denied suffering from an eating disorder and tried to reassure her fans that her size barely changed, adding that she was healthy.
Sara Hammel, a People Magazine reporter at the time, explained that Monjack never encouraged his wife, who already battled these insecurities. She maintained that instead, he:
"encouraged her to become addicted to plastic surgery. He would tell her, 'Your teeth aren't right. Your nose isn't right. We might need to do something about your chin.'"
Brittany Murphy during Just Cavalli Hosts Flaunt Magazine's 6-Year Anniversary Party in Los Angeles | Source: Getty Images
Two years after her marriage, Brittany died mysteriously in her home. According to Chief Coroner Investigator Craig Harvey, the cause of death was pneumonia, anemia, and multiple drug intake.
The actress had been sick and consumed a high amount of over-the-counter drugs. But less than a week before her death, she spoke to her mother and decided to visit a doctor.
Brittany Murphy during "The Dead Girl" Los Angeles Premiere | Source: Getty Images
Sadly, on December 20, 2009, the 32-year-old collapsed in her bathroom. Dr. Richard Shepherd, a leading pathologist, explained that her death could have been prevented if she had checked into a medical facility twenty-four hours earlier.
Sharon had phoned for emergency service when she found her daughter, so Dr. Shepherd did not blame it on negligence. Instead, he said:
"Brittany was so sedated it's quite possible neither Simon nor Sharon had any idea how ill she actually was. That may be the reason why they didn't call an ambulance."
SIMON MONJACK DIES AFTER HIS WIFE
Simon Monjack and Sharon Murphy during a photo shoot on January 13, 2010 in Hollywood, California. | Source: Getty Images
Five months after Brittany's demise, her husband died. The autopsy report showed similarities between his cause of death and his wife's. The screenwriter suffered acute pneumonia and severe anemia.
Monjack was buried beside Brittany at Forest Lawn cemetery in Hollywood Hills. Brittany's death was a traumatic experience for her loved ones and family. Sadly, it stirred controversy between her parents.
Sharon Murphy and Brittany Murphy during 2002 VH1 Vogue Fashion Awards in New York | Source: Getty Images
Despite the autopsy reports, her dad, Angelo Bertolotti, revealed that she died from poisoning. He reached this conclusion following a lab result that suggested the presence of ten heavy metals in her hair strand.
Sharon was not having any of this; she felt crushed by his theory and told the world that Bertolotti was never present for their child and had barely spoken to the deceased for years. Nevertheless, this was not enough explanation to those who believed Sharon might have been responsible for her child's death.
Brittany Murphy during "Happy Feet" Press Conference in Beverly Hills | Source: Getty Images
Following the release of a Discovery documentary titled "Brittany Murphy: An ID Mystery," Dr. Cyril Wecht, a forensic expert, supported Bertolotti's claim, especially since Monjack's cause of death was similar to Brittany's.
Although there has been no further investigation into Brittany's death, despite her demise, fans continue to remember her charming smiles, radiance, and impressive acting skills—she lives on in the hearts of many, thanks to her movie career.
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