With only 14 River Phoenix celebrates his breakthrough in the Steven King adaption Stand by Me. The film is a box office hit and, through his role as Chris Chambers, River becomes a teen heartthrob. River Phoenix plays the lead role–at the start of the 90s, the actor played in Hollywood’s top league. He was the idol of an entire generation. In the adventure epic Indiana Jones, playing alongside Harrison Ford, he finally appealed to a mass audience. He received much critical acclaim and an Oscar nomination for his roles in the arthouse films Running on empty and My own private Idaho.
What exactly happened in the night of October 30, 1993 remains unclear to this day. River Phoenix is set to play with his band in Johnny Depp’s Viper room on Sunset Boulevard. River Phoenix dies of a speedball overdose, an often-lethal mix of cocaine and heroine, on the sidewalk outside the club–in vain.
In the series TOO young TO DIE his family and friends talk about one of the most talented actors of his generation. Everyone has a different memory of River Phoenix, and yet all remember him as a very special and fascinating personality. It is a film about the life and not the death of a special person who died too young – River Phoenix, the solitary star.