The vast majority of troubled entertainers who have died prematurely, many of whom are gay icons, have been women, e.g., Marilyn, Judy, Billie and Dinah. One of the few men on this list is actor Montgomery Clift. He was found dead in bed in his New York apartment the morning of July 23, 1966; he was 45. The cause of death was listed as a heart attack, but a major contributing factor was the cumulative effect of pain killers and liquor.
During the first half of the 1950s Clift was considered one of Hollywood's finest actors, but his life went into a tailspin after he was seriously injured in a car accident in 1956. He made eighteen movies during his career and was nominated for an Oscar four times - but never took a statue home (Peter O'Toole and Richard Burton were each nominated seven times without winning). The movies were:
- The Search (1948)
- A Place in the Sun (1951)
- From Here to Eternity (1953)
- Judgment at Nuremberg (1961)
Long before his accident, Clift abused pills and booze. Additionally, he was a closeted homosexual in the habit of picking up strangers and male hustlers, often finding himself in trouble that had to be cleaned up by his agent or movie studio. He was moody, insecure and an outsider to Hollywood's A-list. However, he counted Elizabeth Taylor as a close friend (they appeared together in A Place in the Sun; Suddenly Last Summer; and Raintree Country.