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SYFY WIRE Cocaine Bear

'Cocaine Bear' and 'Goodfellas' Star Ray Liotta's Cause of Death Revealed

Cocaine Bear was one of the final projects the actor completed before his death in the spring of 2022.

By Matthew Jackson
Cocaine Bear Trailer

It's been nearly a year since legendary actor Ray Liotta passed away suddenly at the age of 67, and now documents related to his passing have reportedly revealed his cause of death. 

According to TMZ, which obtained documents on Liotta's passing from the Dominican Republic, where he was shooting a film at the time, Liotta died due to a combination of "respiratory insufficiency," "pulmonary edema," and "acute heart failure." The actor reportedly passed away in his sleep on May 26, 2022, while in the country to shoot the film Dangerous Waters

RELATED: Elizabeth Banks on which character is the heart of Cocaine Bear

A familiar face across film and television for decades, Liotta was best known for his work in movies like Field of DreamsGoodfellasHannibal, and most recently, The Many Saints of Newark. At the time of his death, he had already completed work on several projects, including the Apple TV+ series Black Bird and, of course, Cocaine Bear, in which he plays a drug kingpin out to find the missing cocaine that sets the whole plot in motion. 

Speaking about Liotta after his passing while on the promotional tour for Cocaine Bear, director Elizabeth Banks said that the actor approached the whole weird project "joyfully" and was "game" to throw himself into the chaotic plot. She went on to describe Liotta's last day on a location shoot in Ireland as one of her favorite memories from the production. 

"We shot his very final scene on the ledge of a waterfall and he's covered in blood and guts; laying there," Banks told SYFY WIRE. "We wrapped him and then he gave a really beautiful speech to the crew, thanking all of them and talking about how everyone assumes he's Italian because he's played these Italians. He actually found out through his genetic tests that he was mostly Irish, so being in Ireland was really meaningful to him. And it truly brought all of us to tears. It was just so lovely."

You can catch Liotta's performance in Cocaine Bear on Peacock now.