Actor Gary Coleman died at a Provo, Utah hospital of a brain hemorrhage Friday, possibly after family members decided to take him off life support, according to various reports. He reportedly fell inside his home and hit his head Wednesday before being rushed to a hospital, where he remained. He was 42.
The 4 foot, 8 inch actor had a kidney condition that kept him the size of a child even after he matured beyond his child-acting days on television sitcom Diff'rent Strokes. When the show went off the air in 1986, after an eight-year run, Coleman said he was happy to be starting the rest of his life. But that life was troubled.
He soon found that money he believed he had earned from the show had allegedly been squandered by his parents, and his attempts to revive a show-biz career were mostly unsuccessful. In 1999 he declared bankruptcy.
He scuffled with fans and paparazzi, was arrested for alleged domestic assault, ran for governor in the crazy 2003 California race, and worked as a security guard.
On Diff'rent Strokes he played a young Arnold Jackson, who's signature line was, “Whatchu talkin' bout.” He played himself on the animated Fox show The Simpsons in 1999, repeating the line as a holiday greeting: “Whatchu talkin' bout … everybody.”
Advertising disclosure: We may receive compensation for some of the links in our stories. Thank you for supporting LA Weekly and our advertisers.