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Podtalk: Verne Troyer in Memoriam, in Interview From 2012

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CHICAGO – Verne Troyer will always be one of the more intriguing breakout celebrities of the last 20 years. Always and forever known as “Mini Me” in the Austin Powers series of films, he also endured stereotyping and the health difficulties associated with his diminutive size. Troyer died on April 21st, 2018, at the age of 49. The cause of his death remains unknown.

Verne Troyer, in Chicago, 2012
Photo credit: Joe Arce of Starstruck Foto for HollywoodChicago.com

Verne Troyer was born in Michigan, to a family of average-sized parents and siblings. His family has Amish roots, but he was raised outside of the fellowship. He moved to Texas when he was 21 years old, and was working for a phone company when he was connected to an entertainment placement service for smaller-sized people. That led to his first gig, as a stand-in/stunt person for the John Hughes film, “Baby’s Day Out” (1994). Five years later, after taking roles in familiar 1990s films – including “Men in Black” and “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas” – he broke out as “Mini-Me,” and portrayed him in the second (“The Spy Who Shagged Me”) and third films (“Goldmember”) of the Austin Powers series. He gained fame from the role, went on to work in the first Harry Potter film, and collaborated with director Terry Gilliam in “The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus.”

Verne Troyer, Defiant to the End
Photo credit: Joe Arce of Starstruck Foto for HollywoodChicago.com

Recently, Troyer mostly did reality TV, including “The Surreal Life,” “British Celebrity Big Brother” and “Wife Swap.” He also had a series of health issues, and died in Los Angeles shortly after doing a stint in rehab for alcoholism, and after being hospitalized for an unknown reason in early April.

In the following podtalk from 2012, a reflective Verne Troyer talks about his Michigan boyhood, the perspective from his height, and the weird fame after portraying “Mini Me.”

To access the Verne Troyer film, “Bit Players,” click here. Verne Troyer, 1969-2018

HollywoodChicago.com senior staff writer Patrick McDonald

Writer, Editorial Coordinator

© 2018 Patrick McDonald, HollywoodChicago.com

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