UPDATED, 3:55 PM: The Los Angeles County Medical Examiner-Coroner’s Office said today that producer and Benderspink co-founder J.C. Spink died of an accidental overdose or “multiple drug intoxication.” The report did not specify which drugs were involved.
PREVIOUSLY, April 19: J.C. Spink, the Hollywood film producer one half of the management and production company Benderspink, who was a machine when it came to script sales, has died, it was confirmed by the Los Angeles County Medical Examiner. No cause of death was released as yet. He was 45.
“He was found unresponsive at the scene at the residence on 1200 Green Acre last night at 8:18 PM by his brother,” said the Coroner Ed Winter. “It was reported to us as possible natural causes, and we are looking into it.”
Spink and Chris Bender were college roommates who started the management company and built it into a reputable firm before Spink left last May in an acrimonious departure. Spink’s producer credits included The Hangover and The Ring franchises, We’re The Millers, I Am Number Four, Monster-In-Law, The Butterfly Effect, Cats and Dogs and last year’s Criminal starring Kevin Costner and Ryan Reynolds.
Spink also was an actor, well sort of. He had cameos in two episodes of Adam Goldberg’s hit TV show The Goldbergs. Spink was also a former schoolmate of Goldberg who had actually written a character into the show for him. “Ever since we were kids on the school bus, J.C. was a passionate, driven and brilliant guy who put his friends first,” Goldberg said in a statement. “He mastered the spec game by his 30s, but even more impressive, he gave countless writers a start in the business. One of my best memories on The Goldbergs was when I cast J.C. to play our angry bus driver from our childhood. It was so surreal and incredibly fun. He really will be missed.”
Spink and Bender dissolved the company after an 18-year run that saw a slew of hits for its swath of A-list writers. We spoke to Spink many times here at Deadline and he was always promoting his clients with passionate enthusiasm. He was extremely well liked around town and affable. He also liked to live on the edge and in the past had some problems with addiction.
“We started Benderspink in our late 20s almost 18 years ago,” the pair said in a joint statement at the time of the breakup. “We could not be more proud of what we’ve worked on together and are excited for the next chapter in each of our lives.”