Ned Vizzini, ‘Funny Thing’ and ‘Believe’ Writer, Dead at 32

Ned Vizzini, 'Funny Thing' and 'Believe' Writer, Dead at 32

Earned success early, but struggled with it

Ned Vizzini, whose novel “It's Kind of a Funny Story” was adapted into a 2010 film starring Zach Galifianakis, has died at 32. His death was ruled a suicide, the New York Medical Examiner confirmed to TheWrap.

Vizzini (pictured above in 2002) also wrote for MTV's “Teen Wolf” and worked on NBC's upcoming “Believe.” A native New Yorker, he first rose to fame with stories based on his experiences at Stuyvesant High School. His first book, “Teen Angst? Naaah…: A Quasi-Autobiography,” was published when he was 19.

Also read: Hollywood's Notable Deaths of 2013

But Vizzini suffered for his success. He told the Village Voice in 2006 that he suffered a nervous breakdown after publishing his second novel, “Be More Chill,” at 23.

“I guess ‘nervous breakdown’ is the right term,” he told the Voice. “Yeah, that pretty much covers all the bases.”

The Voice said he fought depression and had trouble dealing with the pressure of fulfilling his contract. He also worried that people would lose interest in his writing as the novelty of his youth wore off.

But he continued to have a thriving career as he aged. Vizzini had a gift for writing young, deadpan characters. He was collaborating with “Harry Potter” director Chris Columbus on the “House of Secrets” series of young adult novels, the second of which is due in the spring.

“I'd never written a novel, and I needed to co-write it with an established author. I read a few samples, and I was really taken with the work of Ned Vizzini,” Columbus told USA Today. “I loved his books, loved his dialogue, and I loved the way he could write teenagers.”

Vizzini also wrote the 2012 novel “The Other Normals” and wrote for ABC's “The Last Resort.”

He is survived by his wife and their son.

  • Bob Strauss

    fix your headline

  • Mike

    Funny Story not Funny Thing. PSH, nice reporting!

    anyway, horrible news. so sad. his collaboration with Columbus is just perfect. His work will live on. And the movie is one of my favorites.

  • Darren Kalix

    Can I have his futon?

  • serdude1968

    Hey's TIM MOLLOY — the guy who GAVE AWAY THE ENDING TO BREAKING BAD … you know…the show that many folks learned about later and so were playing catch up by watching previous season episodes. BUT NOW WE DON'T HAVE TO…because good old Timmy GAVE AWAY THE FINAL EPISODE ENDING without having the decency (or professionalism) to post a spoiler alert. So I suggest not reading his stuff anymore–I sure won't. He might give away the ending to Nebraska next, or some other event that is only some weeks old.