Justin Long Shares Heartwarming Philip Seymour Hoffman Story on 9th Anniversary of His Death

On the anniversary of Philip Seymour Hoffman’s death, Justin Long is reflecting on the late Oscar winner’s life and craft. See why the Dodgeball star saw him as an "acting god."

By Daisy Maldonado Feb 03, 2023 3:32 PMTags
Watch: Matt Damon Remembers Philip Seymour Hoffman

Philip Seymour Hoffman will always be the master in Justin Long's eyes.

The Dodgeball star marked the 9th anniversary of the Capote actor's death with an emotional tribute reflecting on the first time the pair met.

"Thinking about Phil Hoffman today. Can't believe it's been 9 years…," Justin wrote in Feb. 2 Instagram post alongside of photo with Philip and Sam Rockwell. "Sam Rockwell and I were shooting the movie 'Galaxy Quest' (my first) in the summer of '99. One day Sam said 'My friend Phil is gonna stop by a little later.' I tried to play it cool but it must've been obvious how excited I was at even the possibility that the 'Phil' he was referring to was 'Seymour Hoffman."

He continued, "When he drove up to where we all were, I was immediately struck by how boisterous and jokey he was with Sam and our other friend, Leif-definitely not a 'Philip' but a 'Phil.' Knowing what a huge fan I was, Sam wanted to introduce us and I am forever grateful that he did."

Philip Seymour Hoffman: A Life in Pictures

Justin noted that Philip—who died in February 2014 at the age of 46—was "an acting god" to him when he first entered the industry, adding that the Oscar winner was his "Meryl Streep or Marlon Brando."

And the He's Just Not That into You actor noted Philip's influence continues to shape his approach to work, stating, "Whenever I'm stuck in a scene I often find myself thinking 'What would Phil do?' - it always grounds me in the truth."


The 44-year-old went on to share how much he missed hearing Philip's infectious laugh.

"When I think of him now I can also still hear his laugh. He'd laugh so hard he'd get a little wheezy and his eyes glistened with emerging tears - full and bold and lacking even a hint of self-consciousness," Justin concluded. "He laughed the way he acted. Today I'm missing both #tbt."