The Truth About William Hurt And Marlee Matlin's Relationship

The following article includes allegations of domestic abuse and sexual assault.

William Hurt has died. The veteran actor, who nabbed Oscars for his roles in "Kiss of the Spider Woman," "Broadcast News," and "Children of a Lesser God," died of natural causes in his home in Portland, Oregon on March 13.

Hurt's contributions to the entertainment industry cannot be overstated, which is why his colleagues in the industry did not fail to pay tribute to him following the news of his death. "Wow, another Major loss to the acting community. Great actor. Great mind," tweeted Mark Ruffalo. "He was a master of his acting craft. Every take was new and revealing. #rip," said director M. Night Shyamalan. "William Hurt was a beyond brilliant film & stage actor, and then he went and guested on @TheKOQ and was so deadpan, low-key hilarious," recalled Patton Oswalt.

While Hurt's friends in the industry showered him with praise, Twitter wasn't as kind, and instead brought up Hurt's past relationship with Marlee Matlin, which was marred by controversy.

William Hurt and Marlee Matlin's relationship was riddled with controversy

The internet recognized William Hurt's remarkable body of work, but some also brought up his previous relationship with actor Marlee Matlin. The two starred together in "Children of a Lesser God," where Matlin's phenomenal performance made her the first-ever deaf actor to win an Oscar. Hurt presented the award, but apparently, by the time they were together in the car, he asked if she thought she even deserved it.

In her memoir, "I'll Scream Later," Matlin also shared in detail how she had suffered from abuse and assault with Hurt, per the Daily Beast. She recalled the time when Hurt came home drunk at 4:30 a.m. "and the next thing I knew he'd pulled me out of the bed, screaming at me, shaking me." She added, "He threw me on the bed, started ripping off his clothes and mine. I was crying... The next thing I remember is Bill ramming himself inside me as I sobbed." In an interview with Access Hollywood in 2009, Matlin also said, "I always had fresh bruises every day... There were a lot of things that happened that were not pleasant."

Hurt didn't make much of an effort to dispute Matlin's statements, and instead offered a public apology. "My own recollection is that we both apologized and both did a great deal to heal our lives. Of course, I did and do apologize for any pain I caused," he said. "And I know we both have grown. I wish Marlee and her family nothing but good."

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).