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Derbyshire actor pays tribute to tragic Philip Seymour Hoffman

John Hurt.

John Hurt.

A well-known Derbyshire actor has paid tribute to Hollywood star Philip Seymour Hoffman, who was found dead in his New York apartment after an apparent drug overdose yesterday.

John Hurt, who was born in Chesterfield and is best-known for his role in The Elephant Man, starred alongside the tragic 46-year-old in the 2003 film Owning Mahowny.

Mr Hurt, 73, said: “I can’t tell you how I feel right now. It has hit me very hard.

“He was a great actor and a great member of the film and theatre community.

“He was an extraordinary talent directorially as well as actorially.

“He is going to be greatly, greatly missed.”

Police said Mr Hoffman was found with a needle sticking out of his left arm. He was surrounded by empty bags of heroin.

The dad-of-three made his name in the 1990s in films including Boogie Nights and the Big Lebowski, before winning the best actor Oscar for his 2005 portrayal of writer Truman Capote.

His latest role was in the Hunger Games series of films.

In a statement, his family called his death “tragic and sudden”.

“We are devastated by the loss of our beloved Phil,” they added.

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