River, one of Hollywood’s most promising actors, died a tragic death at the age of 23 outside a famous LA club. In a new biography exposing his life, he started doing drugs at an early age with another child star — keep reading to find out who it was.
It’s been said that River Phoenix could have had a career like Brad Pitt or Leonardo DiCaprio, had he lived a longer life. Rolling Stone writer Gavin Edwards‘ new book, Last Night at the Viper Room: River Phoenix and the Hollywood He Left Behind, reveals the sad beginnings of the talented actor’s life that led him to fatally overdose on heroine and cocaine.
River Phoenix & Corey Feldman Smoked Marijuana Together For The First Time
In an excerpt from Gavin’s book, River, whose brother is actor Joaquin Phoenix, and fellow former child star, Corey Feldman, met as teens in LA when River was filming Stand By Me. They tried marijuana together for the first time, coughing and having sore throats afterward.
Corey also admitted that River was obsessed with talking about sex, which led to having intercourse at the age of 15 — and asked his parents for permission before he did it!
“Sex was nearly all that River could think about,” Feldman said. River had a crush on an older teenage girl, and she wanted to have sex. He went to his parents for their permission, and strangely “pitched a tent in the backyard of their rented house and decorated it to enhance the mood.”
River Phoenix Died From Tragic Drug Overdose
River’s parents were missionaries in the Children of God religion, and he begged for money in Venezuela when he lived with them in South America, singing for coins. Sadly, he may have also been sexually abused before the age of 10, due to the religious movement.
He was singing for money in LA with three of his other siblings when an agent discovered him, projecting him into the life of a child star and then teen heartthrob.
River passed away tragically from a heroine and cocaine overdose on Oct. 31, 1993. He convulsed and collapsed outside of Johnny Depp‘s club at the time, The Viper Room, in front of siblings Joaquin and Rain, and girlfriend at the time, Samantha Mathis.
— Ivy Jacobson