It’s been nearly 12 years since Brittany Murphy’s sudden and tragic death. Towards the end of her life, the actress was married to writer Simon Monjack who died a year after her. Find out more about Brittany’s late-husband here.
The entertainment industry was shook by Brittany Murphy’s sudden death in December 2009 at 32-years-old. The actress wow-ed audiences when she starred in Clueless in 1995, and she went on to many more starring roles in movies such as 8 Mile, Just Married, and Girl, Interrupted. In December 2009, she was rushed to the hospital from her Los Angeles home and died. Her cause of death was revealed to be pneumonia.
Brittany met Simon Monjack in 2006, and the two got married in 2007. They stayed together until Brittany’s death in 2009. After the wedding, Brittany and her mom Sharon Murphy moved in with the screenwriter. Months after Brittany’s death, Simon also died in his home, after very similar causes of Brittany’s death at 40-years-old. Find out more about Brittany’s husband Simon Monjack here!
How did Brittany & Simon meet?
Brittany and Simon allegedly met when the actress was just 17-years-old. Shortly after her death, Simon appeared on Larry King Live with Sharon and discussed how he and the star had first come in contact when she was a teen. He said that he’d photographed her and “became friends” with Brittany and her mom. “I would visit her on the sets and see Sharon. And, you know, it was very — she was infectious, an infectious angel,” he said.
Prior to meeting Simon, Brittany had brief relationships with Ashton Kutcher and key grip Joe Macaluso, whom she was engaged to from 2005 to 2006, via CBS News. The 8 Mile star wed the writer in a small Jewish ceremony in April 2007. Brittany’s marriage to Simon surprised many people, and the star opened up about their marriage in an interview with OK Magazine. “The easiest decision I ever made in my life was getting married,” she said, via MTV. “He’s flown around the world to make sure we spend every single night together.”
Simon was a screenwriter
Simon worked in Hollywood prior to getting married to Brittany. The two productions he’d worked on were Factory Girl in 2006 and Two Days, Nine Lives in 2001, according to his IMDb. He was a writer for both movies, a producer and director for Two Days, Nine Lives and an executive producer for Factory Girl.
How did Simon die?
Brittany collapsed in her Hollywood home on the morning of December 20, 2009 and was rushed to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. She was pronounced dead later that morning. Coroners said that her death “appears to be natural” and listed her cause of death as “deferred.” Months later it was revealed that she had died from complications of pneumonia and anemia.
About five months after the Clueless star’s passing, Simon was found dead in the pair’s home by Brittany’s mom on May 23, 2010, via E! News. It was later reported that Simon also died due to complications from anemia and pneumonia, just like Brittany had. Rumors swirled that the pneumonia was caused by mold in the couple’s home, but the speculation was quickly debunked, according to ABC News. “It is unusual to have two people die of similar circumstances with pneumonia. We’ve been looking at it and saying, ‘Something isn’t right.’ I’m not saying you can’t get pneumonia from mold, but we did all the tests on it — mold did not come up in the toxicology reports,” Los Angeles County assistant chief coroner Ed Winter told ABC.
Simon had legal issues
Shortly after Brittany’s death, problems from Simon’s past began to surface. Simon had had warrants out for his arrest in Virginia in 2005 for credit card fraud and theft charges, according to the New York Post. He was also sued for nearly $500,000 in 2006 by a New York mortgage firm. His ex-wife Simone Bienne also sued him in 2006 for $63,000. Ahead of the release of the HBOMax documentary What Happened, Brittany Murphy? director Cynthia Hill noted that Brittany’s husband had a “pattern” of troubling behavior. “He was a disturbed individual who was used to conning people and Brittany was one of his last victims,” she told People in October 2021. “There was a pattern of behavior that became very obvious the more research that we did.”
Simon was married before Brittany
Prior to Brittany, Simon was married to British TV personality Simone Bienne from 2001 until 2006. The pair had wed in a Las Vegas ceremony, via The Sun. Simone has made appearances on various talk shows, most notably Live From Studio Five in 2010, according to her IMDb page. While not much is known about her marriage to Simon, a friend of hers said that it was troubling in a 2009 interview with DailyMail. “She suffered years of hell with that man,” the friend said.