Philip Seymour Hoffman’s last wish was that his kids wouldn’t grow up to be spoiled brats.
The Oscar winner, who died of a drug overdose in February at age 46, repeatedly rejected his accountant’s suggestion that he set aside money for his son and two daughters, because he “did not want his children to be considered ‘trust fund’ kids,” court documents reveal.
Attorney James Cahill Jr. — appointed by a court to protect the interests of Hoffman’s children, Cooper, 10, Tallulah, 7, and Willa, 5, in his estate proceeding — recently interviewed the actor’s accountant, David Friedman.
Friedman “recalled conversations with [Hoffman] in the year before his demise where the topic of a trust was raised for the kids and summarily rejected by him,” Cahill says in the Manhattan Surrogate’s Court filing.
Instead, Hoffman wanted his estimated $35 million fortune to go directly to his longtime girlfriend, Mimi O’Donnell, the kids’ mother. Hoffman said he believed she would “take care of the children,” Friedman recalled, according to the filing.
“Friedman also advised that he observed Hoffman treating his partner/girlfriend . . . in the same manner as if she were a spouse,” Cahill reported in the July 18 filing. Hoffman told the accountant he “simply did not believe in marriage.”
O’Donnell, a costume designer, had “substantial” joint bank accounts with Hoffman, whom she met in 1999 working on a play at the Off-Broadway Labyrinth Theater Company.
“The size and nature of the jointly held assets support the position that [Hoffman] regarded [O’Donnell] as the natural object of his bounty,” Cahill says in court papers. O’Donnell had reportedly kicked Hoffman out of their $4.2 million Jane Street apartment before he died because of his drug addiction.
But Cahill said that because there is nothing suspicious about the actor’s will, it should be approved by the court.
Hoffman’s other concern was where his kids would be raised.
He included in his will an unusual request that his son grow up in one of three cultural hubs.
“It is my strong desire [that] my son, Cooper Hoffman, be raised and reside in or near the borough of Manhattan [or] Chicago, Illinois, or San Francisco, California,” he said in the will.
It was written in 2004 before the births of his two daughters.
“The purpose of this request is so that my son will be exposed to the culture, arts and architecture that such cities offer,” the Broadway and Hollywood star wrote.
Hoffman’s latest film, “A Most Wanted Man,” opened in theaters on July 18.
EDIT: The previous title was horribly baity so I've changed it