I had no idea what to think upon hearing that Andy Hallett had died of heart failure on March 29, at the tragically young age of 33. Hallett, who played the part of Lorne on 76 episodes of Joss Whedon's TV series Angel from 2000 to 2004, had always been a radiant presence onscreen, and watching his performance over the years created a sense of warmth, kindness, and generosity in the viewer.
From all accounts, that was no mere performance; it was real. In interviews, he was refreshingly genuine, and he was known for his wonderful relationship with fans. I've never read a single comment from any of his Angel co-stars that paints him as being anything less than a pleasure to work with. He was, to put it quite simply, a nice guy.
Which is why his passing is all the more hard to swallow. He may not have been a big star, but as Lorne, he played a crucial role in establishing Angel's feel and rhythm. The second season premiere, "Judgment," was Hallett's first acting job, but you'd never be able to tell that from the wit and energy he brought to the screen. He may have been stuck under thick green make-up and tiny little red horns, but Hallett never made Lorne feel anything less than human. Lorne was a friendly demon who ran a karaoke bar, and for someone who was both naturally friendly and naturally gifted with the ability to sing, the role was a perfect fit.
Considering how constantly Hallett appeared on Angel, and how important he was to the show, it was a shock to realize that he didn't officially become a series regular until some time near the end of the fourth season. And now, of course, it is a shock to realize that, after losing a long battle with heart disease, such a talented young singer and actor will no longer be around to brighten up the world. Enjoy this video of Hallett singing "Lady Marmalade" as Lorne from the Angel episode "The House Always Wins." It is exemplary of the kind of joy he brought to his life and his work.
He will be sorely missed.Powered by Sidelines