Saturday, November 06, 2004

The Death of Spalding Gray

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Gray's greatest success was his Obie-winning monologue "Swimming to Cambodia," which recounted in part his movie role opposite Sam Waterston in "The Killing Fields." The monologue, developed over two years of performance, became a film directed by Jonathan Demme. His book "Gray's Anatomy," about his struggles with a serious eye problem, was also made into a film.

Gray turned a midlife crisis into "It's a Slippery Slope," a 1997 monologue that mingled ski stories with tales of his new role as a father. He also had an active career in Hollywood, with roles in films including David Byrne's "True Stories," "Beaches" and "The Paper" — 38 film appearances in all.

In the 1993 Steven Soderbergh film "King of the Hill," he played an eccentric bachelor who kills himself.

On Broadway, he starred as the stage manager in the 1989 revival of "Our Town," a production that won a Tony Award for best revival. In 2000, he was in the less-acclaimed revival of Gore Vidal's 1960 political drama, "The Best Man." More

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