Hollywood lost another promising actor on July 13, 2013. This actor was Cory Monteith, best known for his role as playing Finn Hudson on the FOX television show Glee. He was 31.
According to USA Today, the Canadian actor died from a mix of drugs, namely heroin and alcohol. He was at the Fairmont Pacific Rim hotel in Vancouver, and no foul play was suspected. Says Vancouver police department media relations officer Brian Montague, “We’re not providing exactly what we found at the scene. Anything that was found at the scene would be evidence.”
Monteith struggled since about the age of 13 with substance abuse. In an interview with Parade magazine in 2011, he stated he was doing “anything and everything, as much as possible” and that he was “lucky to be alive.” Cory checked himself into rehab this past April, supposedly upon the insistence of his on-screen/off-screen girlfriend, actress Lea Michele. It was the second time he entered rehab for substance abuse; the first time was when he was 19.
Although none of us knew Monteith personally, it seemed his outlook on life was mixed. On Inside the Actors Studio, he told James Lipton that in real life he was the opposite of the optimistic Finn Hudson. Then Lipton asked the question he so often does: If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates? Monteith replied, “‘Uh, sorry I haven’t been around. There’s a good explanation.” Still, fellow cast members described him as a warm, loving presence.
Many actors and actresses from Glee made heartwarming comments about the actor on Twitter. Said the network Fox about his death: “We are deeply saddened by this tragic news. Cory was an exceptional talent and an even more exceptional person. He was a true joy to work with, and we will all miss him tremendously. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and loved ones.”
Before Glee, Monteith had small roles in several television shows, including Kyle XY, Supernatural, Smallville, and Stargate Atlantis. When Glee came along, Monteith’s audition tape was the song “I Can’t Fight this Feeling” by REO Speedwagon. Ironically this is the song Matthew Morrison hears while Finn is singing in the shower, forcing the glee coach to put Finn on the team. Cory said of his casting process, “I was like a lot of kids, looking for something to be interested in. Something to be passionate about. All you need is permission. Not only for Glee, but for anything in life.”
On Glee, Finn plays the popular football star dating the head cheerleader when suddenly he finds himself a part of the glee club. As he gets to know the “losers” belonging to the club, his perspective changes into one of empathy and open-mindedness.
As a fan of Glee, I’m curious how they’re going to write one of the best, main characters off the show. Cory Monteith, you will truly be missed. Rest in peace.