Artist Catalog

Spalding Gray

Born: June 5 1941
Born in: Providence, Rhode Island


Spalding Gray

Spalding Rockwell Gray (June 5, 1941 – January 11, 2004) was an American actor and writer. He is best known for the autobiographical monologues that he wrote and performed for the theater in the 1980s and 1990s, as well as for his film adaptations of these works, beginning in 1987. He wrote and starred in several, working with different directors.

Theater critics John Willis and Ben Hodges described his monologue work as "trenchant, personal narratives delivered on sparse, unadorned sets with a dry, WASP, quiet mania." Gray achieved renown for his monologue Swimming to Cambodia, which he adapted as a 1987 film in which he starred; it was directed by Jonathan Demme. Other of his monologues which Gray adapted for film were Monster in a Box (1991), directed by Nick Broomfield, and Gray's Anatomy (1996), directed by Steven Soderbergh.

Gray is believed to have committed suicide in New York City in January 2004, after struggling with depression and severe injuries following a car accident. Steven Soderbergh made a documentary film about Gray's life entitled And Everything Is Going Fine (2010). An unfinished monologue and a selection from his journals were published in 2005 and 2011, respectively.

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