Think you know what happened to some of Tinseltown's biggest stars? Think again!
Whitney Houston died: 11 February 2012
The whole world let out a united gasp when Whitney Houston was found dead at the age of 48 after ‘accidentally drowning’ in the bathtub of her suite at the Beverly Hilton hotel.
Police at the scene said there were ‘no obvious signs of criminal intent’ and a toxicology report showed that the singer had been using cocaine shortly before she died, which – judging by her well-publicised battle with the drug – seemed an unsurprising verdict.
However, it was because of this very history with drugs that Whitney wasn’t allowed to take baths. So why was she in there?
An anonymous bodyguard, who worked with Whitney for 12 years, explained that during the period his team looked after her, the star was never allowed to take baths on her own and unaccompanied time in the bathroom was always limited.
‘There would be a check on her every seven to 10 minutes to make sure that she was alright,’ he said.
And although at the time it was unclear whether she actually drowned or died before slipping under the water, he added: ‘The rule was showers only and the team would time the showers because this is the kind of thing we feared.’
Another huge question mark still hanging over the coroner’s report is that although the bath was full to the brim, with water flooding the bathroom floor and even soaking the bedroom carpet, when Whitney was found, the taps had been turned off.
Clearly they didn’t turn off by themselves, so did Whitney answer the door to someone after being left alone in her suite?
Brittany Murphy died: 20 December 2009
32, the sudden death of Brittany Murphy rocked Hollywood. Found slumped
on her bathroom floor, the Clueless and 8 Mile actress was pronounced
dead at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center – and the rumour mill went into
overdrive with talk of a drug overdose.
Brittany’s body was buried four days later and a coroner’s report stated ‘pneumonia’ as the cause of her death.
was a verdict that her father Angelo Bertolotti refused to accept and
when Brittany’s husband Simon Monjack, 40, also died from pneumonia five
months after her passing, family and friends started to question
whether something sinister had gone on.
‘Brittany wasn’t a
junkie, she wasn’t a party girl,’ said close friend Julia Davis.
was a sweet, innocent young woman. Her dad and myself want to set the
Armed with his daughter’s DNA samples, Angelo chose to
fund two independent tests, only to uncover some shocking results.
levels of ‘heavy metals’ found in her system – so potent that it could
have been caused by ingesting rat poison – suggest that someone might
have knowingly poisoned her. But who would have wanted Brittany and her
In a spine-chilling clip from US radio series Dr
Rob: Spirits And The Supernatural, psychic Dr Rob Cissna claimed the
‘spirit of Brittany Murphy’ had contacted him and suggested to him that
‘everyone around her wanted her dead’.
Brittany’s spirit is said
to have told Dr Rob she was ‘used and abused’ and that her husband had
controlled her with drugs until the day she died.
In light of all
the poisoning allegations, Brittany’s body may now be exhumed for
further tests – something her father Angelo is likely to be in favour
of. ‘There’s nothing natural in the way Brittany and Simon died,’ he says.
‘I don’t intend to stop searching for answers until their deaths are properly and thoroughly investigated.’
Anna Nicole Smith died: 8 February 2007
Playboy model Anna Nicole Smith first made headlines when, aged 26, she married 89-year-old Texan oil billionaire J Howard Marshall, insisting that it was love and not money she was after.
when she was found dead, aged 39, in a Florida hotel from an overdose
of prescription drugs a mere five months after losing her 20-year-old
son Daniel, it sparked a new media frenzy.
It wasn’t long before
the tabloids were alive with speculation over the eerily similar
circumstances surrounding the two deaths.
Daniel had died from a
‘lethal combination of drugs’ when he was visiting his mother in
hospital soon after the birth of her daughter Dannielynn, leaving Anna
so devastated that she tried to climb into his coffin at the funeral.
‘Anna and Daniel were inseparable,’ said Howard K Stern,
her lover at the time. ‘Daniel was without question the most important
person in her life.’ However, when Anna was found dead, it was Howard
who made headlines of his own, finding himself at the centre of a grisly
Bodyguard Maurice Brighthaupt – who was one of the last people to see the star alive – was called to testify against Howard and Anna’s psychiatrist Khristine Eroshevich after he claimed to have seen them injecting Anna with drugs.
a trial, in which they were accused of conspiring to give Anna
excessive amounts of pills and sedatives, the pair were convicted of
conspiring to use false names to obtain prescription drugs for the
Neither was charged with her murder and the truth of what really went on remains a mystery.
Notorious BIG died: 9 March 1997
Christopher George Latore Wallace – better known by his stage names The Notorious BIG or Biggie Smalls – was shot dead, aged 24, one night in California.
rapper was in the passenger seat of a car that was flanked by his
entourage and security when another vehicle pulled up alongside and a
‘black male dressed in a blue suit and bow tie’ fired at him.
The shooting rocked the music world, having occurred just six months after Tupac Shakur, 25, his friend turned foe, had suffered a similar fate in Las Vegas.
a host of theories, ranging from gang violence to crooked cops to
government conspiracies, there’s never been an arrest in either case and
both murders remain officially unsolved to this day.
detective Greg Kading says that ‘officially unsolved’ doesn’t
necessarily mean that the police don’t know what went on and claims they
believe hit man Wardell ‘Poochie’ Fouse was hired to kill Biggie for £7,579 after Tupac’s death kicked off a gang war.
believed that Poochie has since been killed due to more in-fighting
between the gangs, so will we ever see the case publicly wrapped up?
thinks not. ‘The co-conspirators are absolutely known,’ he alleges.
‘But they would be very problematic prosecutions because of all of the
convoluted peripheral issues that were raised during the investigation.
‘They’re considered solved internally, but the public’s definition of solved is different.’
Kurt Cobain died: 5 April 1994
When Kurt Cobain, singer with rock band Nirvana,
was found dead at his Seattle home, a shotgun slumped across his chest,
it looked like he’d had every intention of ending his life.
The troubled 27-year-old – who was, according to his wife Courtney Love, depressed and suicidal
left a lengthy scrawled letter saying that his passion for living had
died and how the life of his daughter Frances would be ‘so much happier
The autopsy ruled death from a single gunshot wound to the head. A high level of heroin had also been found in his system.
But private investigator Tom Grant
– hired by Courtney – believes the amount of heroin found in Kurt’s
bloodstream would have made it impossible for him to have successfully
lifted a gun and pull the trigger, suggesting that someone else did it.
also believes Kurt’s ‘suicide note’ was about his plans to leave his
wife and the music industry, not killing himself. It’s claimed that Kurt
wanted a divorce at the time, and a previously unseen letter found in
his wallet was recently published.
In it, he describes Courtney
as a ‘bitch with zits’ and accuses her of ‘siphoning’ off his money. Tom
claims the final sentences of the note, which do allude to suicide,
were added afterwards by another individual.
US journalist Richard
Lee, who studied video footage of the murder scene, has also claimed
there was a distinct lack of enough blood around the body to suggest a
point-blank gunshot wound
to the head. This has prompted questions about someone else possibly pulling the trigger.
this year, two decades on from the death of their idol, some Nirvana
fans campaigned for the case to be reopened after new images of the
death scene were released by Seattle police.
spokesperson said that despite the case being reviewed, there wasn’t
enough fresh evidence to officially reopen the investigation. But
investigator Tom still claims that an ‘unknown assassin’ administered
the drugs and then shot Kurt dead.
Natalie Wood died: 29 November 1981
West Side Story
actress Natalie Wood met a tragic end when, aged 43, she fell overboard
on a weekend boat trip and drowned in the dark waters near Santa
Catalina Island, California.
She was joined on the trip by her husband, Hart To Hart star Robert Wagner, fellow actor Christopher Walken and the boat’s captain .
But the circumstances leading to her death remain unresolved because no
one has admitted to actually seeing her enter the water – so whether
she jumped, slipped or was pushed still remains a mystery.
coroner ruled the reason for death as ‘accident by drowning and
hypothermia’ and closed the case – but it was reopened in 2011 when the
boat’s captain admitted he’d lied to police and had witnessed Natalie
arguing with her husband before her disappearance.
It resulted in her death certificate being changed to ‘drowning and other undetermined factors’.
coroner’s addendum to her autopsy report said the bruises on her body
and abrasion on her left cheek could have been sustained before she hit
the water – so could she have died at someone else’s hands?
A witness on a nearby boat who says she heard Natalie’s ‘cries for help’ reportedly got a chilling message after the star died. Marilyn Wayne
claims she received a note saying: ‘If you value your life, keep quiet
about what you know.’ This could suggest that someone was trying to
cover up foul play.
And in a further spooky twist, Natalie’s mother Maria
is said to have be warned of her fate years earlier. Maria reportedly
visited a psychic who predicted Natalie was destined for fame but that
Maria should ‘beware of dark water’.
When dark waters claimed her daughter’s life, it seemed the eerie prediction had finally come true.