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Clerks Actress Lisa Spoonauer Is Dead At 44

lisa spoonauer clerks

Lisa Spoonauer, an actress known for playing Caitlin Bree in the cult favorite movie Clerks, died over the weekend in her home in Jackson Township, New Jersey. Her cause of death has been stated as an unknown degenerative disease, and the actress was only 44 at her time of death. She leaves behind her husband, Tom Caron, a daughter, Mia Spoonauer, and her stepson Tyler Caron.

Kevin Smith first revealed the news via Instagram, sharing the thoughtful and amusing story of how Lisa Spoonauer initially signed on to Clerks in the first place.

In 1992, I went looking for Lisa without knowing either who she was or the integral role she'd play in my life. I'd held a night of open auditions at the #firstavenueplayhouse, but the perfect Caitlin Bree never walked through the door. So I popped into an acting class at Brookdale Community College and watched the students from the back. Lisa was easily the most natural and authentic voice in the room. She didn't sound like she was acting at all; she delivered scripted dialogue as if she was inventing her conversation in the moment, like people do in real life. Captivated, I approached Lisa cold in the parking lot after the class and said 'This is gonna sound creepy but... Do you wanna be in a movie?' Fearlessly, she replied 'Not if it's porn.' I told her a bit about Clerks and gave her a copy of the script and my phone number. She called me a few days later and said, 'Well it's not porn, but everybody talks like it is. It's funny. I'll do it.'

A few days later, Lisa Spoonauer showed up to play Caitlin Bree, Dante Hicks' ex-girlfriend who he decides to take on date in the movie, even though he is currently in a relationship with Veronica. The role is notable not only for Spoonauer's realistic delivery, but also because--spoilers if you somehow haven't seen this classic--Caitlin inadvertently has sex with an aroused dead man (who had a heart attack while masturbating) in the unlit bathroom at the back of the store, believing it was Dante. If you are going to be remember for a role onscreen, it might as well be one as memorable as Spoonauer's gig in Clerks.

Lisa Spoonauer didn't act on the big screen after her debut role, but she did reprise her role in the Clerks TV series. She later went on to be an event planner and a caterer, according to her obituary. Per Kevin Smith's tribute, Lisa Spoonauer may have been an actress first, but she was an even more excellent mother to her daughter Mia. She clearly shaped the lives of those around her, and she won't be forgotten by Smith, who says she "changed" his life. Forty-four is too young to go, and our thoughts go out to Lisa Spoonauer's family and friends in their time of need.

Spoonauer isn't the first famous face we lost this week. Yesterday, we learned famous James Bond actor Roger Moore had also passed away.

Jessica Rawden

Amazing Race & Top Chef superfan with a pinch of Disney fairy dust thrown in. If you’ve created a rom-com I’ve probably watched it.