Mimi O’Donnell, the mother of Philip Seymour Hoffman’s three children, is “able to function” a year after his tragic death. The theater director opened up about her late partner in an interview with the New York Times Wednesday.
When the Oscar winner died of a heroin overdose in February 2014, O’Donnell promised herself she would not commit to anything for a year. And even now, she seems perturbed by the common question: “Are you OK?”
“It is a ridiculous question -- I don’t know,” she told the Times. “There are so many people who have written beautiful books about grief, who have been able to say it much better than I, but I guess I would say that, after a year has passed, I’m able to function, if that’s the right word, or be in the world a little bit differently.”
O’Donnell, 47, remained quiet after Hoffman's death and issued no statements. The Times interview is the first time the public has heard her speak about Hoffman’s death.
Part of what has helped her heal is going to the theater. “I go in feeling whatever I’m feeling about grief, and all of a sudden there’s something onstage that’s happening -- it cracks something open,” she said. “When they really, truly open up in front of you emotionally, there’s something about it that I find humbling as a human being.” She added that theater is therapeutic because “it makes you remember there are other emotions.”
O’Donnell has since thrust herself into work. She is directing a play by Melissa Ross, “Nice Girl,” in New York City. It centers on a woman who is always single and lives with her widowed mother. It's now in previews and will open May 27.
Follow me on Twitter @mariamzzarella