Recently Reddit user u/ZellaphantBooks2 asked the community: "Which celebrity death seems a bit too suspicious?"
Well, people dove right in and shared their strong thoughts on celebrity deaths. Unfortunately, many of them passed away under mysterious circumstances, and there still isn't cold, hard evidence as to why.
So, here are some shocking celebrity deaths that still remain a mystery today:
Warning: This post contains subjects of mental abuse, drug abuse, and suicide. Please proceed with caution.
1.Brian Jones from the Rolling Stones (Died in 1969 at age 27)
"Brian Jones of the Rolling Stones died under suspicious circumstances while swimming. There was a wild party that night at Jones' home — a neighbor down the road claimed in the early morning hours she heard a bunch of screams coming from the direction of his house. Then a minute or two later, she saw or heard a couple of cars with tires squealing, zooming away from Jones' house. I think the coroner ruled the cause as 'death by misadventure,' but something has never sat right with me on that one."
In the 2019 documentary, Life and Death of Brian Jones, filmmaker Danny Garcia did a deep dive into the mysterious death of Brian Jones. His death was reported as drowning in his pool, but important details seem to be missing/scattered all over the place. Variety wrote that the filmmakers formulated a theory where "Jones and [Frank] Thorogood [the construction worker on Jones' house] got into a fierce argument. That argument ended with Thorogood holding Jones' head underwater in a trough on the property until he drowned." The filmmakers go on to "argue Jones' body was moved to the pool, where his asthma inhaler was found after his death."
2.George Reeves (Died in 1959 at age 45)
"Reeves played Superman in the '50s. There were a bunch of people in his house the night he died, and a lot of conflicting stories. He was also having an affair with a studio exec's wife, who was in attendance with her husband that night. Forensics disagree with the testimony of the witnesses — it's all a clusterfuck."
George Reeves' death was officially ruled a suicide (using a shotgun), and it was rumored he was depressed at the time. But there were various news stories filed at the time that reported different causes, so it's hard to truly know how he died. The night of his death, he allegedly "went upstairs" to shoot himself and, according to the Daily Beast, his fiancé Leonore Lemmon and the people over at his house "waited 45 minutes before calling the police." The Daily Beast also pointed out that, "the police found two gunshot holes in the carpet as well as the one in the ceiling that they traced to the wound in Reeves' head. Yet, the witnesses claimed to have only heard one shot that night."
3.Marilyn Monroe (Died in 1962 at age 36)
"Everything about [Marilyn Monroe's] death makes me sick. I hated hearing about how her body disappeared for a little while..."
Marilyn Monroe's mysterious death in the early '60s has been talked about for over six decades, and some people believe the conspiracy theory that folks in John F. Kennedy's camp murdered her to cover up their alleged affair.
This theory has (tenuous) roots in history. The Los Angeles Times reported that in 1962 Marilyn Monroe's FBI file showed "the feds knew about theories alleging the actress was murdered, but do not show that the bureau looked into the claims."
Monroe's death at the time was ruled a probable suicide or accidental overdose of barbiturates, but there are still questions. In 2022, the Los Angeles Times reported the coroner didn't find "barbiturates" in her body, though they did offer an explanation: "[The] barbiturates had had time to disperse into her blood and liver, explaining why the doctor found no residue in her stomach." In 1982, Los Angeles County reopened the case for investigation to put the Kennedy murder theory to rest and agreed with the original determination that it was likely a suicide or accidental overdose. Still, there seems to be a plethora of scattered information.
4.Dr. Haing S. Ngor (Died in 1996 at age 55)
"He was the Oscar and Golden Globe winner for The Killing Fields (1984). He was Cambodian and a prisoner of the Khmer Rouge regime — he was tortured and imprisoned in Cambodia. He was eventually murdered outside his home in Los Angeles in 1996. His family thinks it was revenge from Cambodians for his outspoken support for human rights, and bringing people to justice in Cambodia."
Arthur Dong, the filmmaker of the Haing S. Ngor documentary, The Killing Fields of Dr. Haing S. Ngor, said the jury's still out on who was actually behind the shooting of Ngor. In 2009, former Khmer Rouge regime leader Comrade Duch blamed Ngor's assassination on Pol Pot, the brutal dictator of the Khmer Rouge regime.
In a 2009 trial regarding Haing S. Ngor's death, Comrade Duch was very candid with his claims. "Haing S. Ngor was killed because he appeared in the film The Killing Fields, and they wished to kill me and my wife in order to shut us up." He even blamed Pol Pot for Ngor's death, saying, '[Pol Pot] used a kind of trick used by Stalin when he killed [Leon] Trotsky in order to kill Haing Ngor."
5.Dorothy Kilgallen (Died in 1965 at age 52)
"She was a reporter and TV personality. She died under mysterious circumstances while investigating [John F.] Kennedy's assassination."
Dorothy Kilgallen's death was initially ruled as "accidental" as a result of alcohol and pills. But because she was investigating JFK's assassination for two years, it all seems too coincidental. When her hairdresser, Marc Sinclair, found her dead in her apartment, he claimed it looked staged. "She always dressed in pajamas and old socks and her makeup was off and her hair was off," Sinclair said. "[But when I saw her], her hair was in place, the makeup was on, [and] the false eyelashes were on."
6.Sridevi (Died in 2018 at age 54)
"She's a Bollywood actress who died in Dubai from an 'accidental drowning' in a bathtub [at a hotel] the day after a wedding where she was in perfect health."
Sridevi's mysterious death at the Jumeirah Emirates Towers Hotel was determined to be due to a cardiac arrest while taking a bath. But fans online have long questioned how she could suffer a cardiac arrest so shortly after looking so full of life at her nephew's wedding. Her death happened before going on a dinner date with her husband, Boney Kapoor.
Because Boney Kapoor was the only one in the room at the time of Sridevi's death, the police pulled him in for questioning. Reportedly they took Kapoor's statement, but it was never released to the public.
7.Elliott Smith (Died in 2003 at age 34)
"He argued with his then-girlfriend [Jennifer Chiba] and when she went to take a shower in the middle of their argument, he suddenly decided to stab himself twice in the chest with no hesitation wounds?"
Elliott Smith struggled with drugs and alcohol throughout his life, but was reportedly sober at the time of his death. Still, many people have a hard time believing he died in such a brutal manner. They think Smith's girlfriend Jennifer Chiba was involved. In 2004 she said, "If I was a suspect, I would have heard from the investigators. His sister, parents, and everyone close to him knows the truth, so I'm not worried about it." Smith's close friend Mark Flannigan weighed in on the manner: "I don't believe the guy stabbed himself in the chest. It doesn't add up. I wouldn't be surprised if someone else did this — he was doing drugs with low-life scum."
8.And Natalie Wood (Died in 1981 at age 43)
"She had a horrible fear of water and yet they want you to believe that she got into a dinghy by herself in the middle of the night when it was pitch black. And she was wearing her nightgown...yeah, this happens all the time!"
Natalie Wood's death is one of the biggest Hollywood mysteries. In 1981 she was sailing on a yacht off the coast of Catalina Island with her then-husband Robert Wagner, Brainstorm costar Christopher Walken, and yacht captain Dennis Davern. She allegedly "drowned," and yet the medical examiners found bruises all over her body. This made sense to the public at the time because she had a big fear of swimming — but folks question it today based on contrasting stories.
In 1997, Christopher Walken told the Hollywood Reporter: "What happened that night only [Natalie Wood] knows because she was alone. A dinghy was bouncing against the boat, and I think she went to move it. She told me she couldn't swim — she was probably half asleep, and she was wearing a coat." In 2020, Robert Wagner and Natalie Wood's daughter Natasha Gregson Wagner interviewed him for People. Gregson Wagner claimed, "I know that if my mom had been in any kind of distress, he would have given his life for her." His response was, "It's true. She said that because she knows me, and she knows that I never would have done anything to hurt her mother."
Note: Some submissions have been edited for length and/or clarity.