The Night Oscar Winner Gig Young Murdered His Wife And Then Blew His Brains Out!

Published on: February 27, 2014
Photography by: CBS Photo Archive "The Twilight Zone- Walking Distance"/Ron Galella Collection Getty Images/
The Night Oscar Winner Gig Young Murdered His Wife And Then Blew His Brains Out!
The Night Oscar Winner Gig Young Murdered His Wife And Then Blew His Brains Out!

Boozy drug-addled Oscar winner GIG YOUNG blew his new young wife away with a .38 caliber snub nose before killing himself.  INSIDE the tragic murder-suicide that shocked Hollywood!

Young was riding high after a lifetime of reaching for super-stardom when he won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor in 1968 for “They Shoot Horses Don’t They?” role as Rocky, the dance marathon M.C. Yet, within ten years, in a haze of booze and tranquilizers, and in spite of a hot young   wife, the 64 year-old veteran thesp took matters into his own hands – spewing bloody headlines worldwide.

On the afternoon of October 19, 1978 in Young’s luxurious Manhattan apartment, Young pointed a .38 caliber snub-revolver at the back of his  new wife Kim Schmidt’s head. He pulled the trigger. She died instantly. Then he stuck the gun in his mouth and sent the fatal bullet blasting through his brain.

While the world was shocked, many friends saw it coming.

In an interview with The ENQUIRER in our Nov. 7, 1978 issue, Paul Steiner, an author and close friend of Young said, “When big parts, great parts… didn’t roll in (after his Oscar win)… he started a sad descent toward disaster. He had skin cancer…he was afraid of growing old.”

Despite playing the debonair sophisticate in the TV series “The Rogues” and key Hollywood A-list pictures like “The Story on Page One” written and directed by famed playwright Clifford Odets, Young never achieved the super-stardom he yearned for.

Yet Young’s dramatic work as an alcoholic in the 1951 film “Come Fill the Cup”  and as a tipsy intellectual in “Teacher’s Pet” garnered him two Oscar noms for Best Supporting Actor. But the line between filmic fantasy and sad reality was becoming more tenuous.

“Drinking became more of a problem,’ Steiner told The ENQUIRER. “There were four week bouts with booze and pills and that made producers wary. It kept ruining his chances.”

Young’s love life was no better with five failed marriages including a pre-“Bewitched” Elizabeth Montgomery.

In early 1978 Young met and wooed Kim Schmidt a petite German-born writer he had met in Hong Kong. After a whirlwind romance they married in a no-frills civil ceremony In New York City on Sept. 27.

“Her was trying to recapture his youth and virility,” Steiner divulged. But “it was too late for her or for anyone to save him.”

Another pal Mike Bell told The ENQUIRER that Young was hooked on the tranquilizer Valium and was “taking seven tablets a day but managed to free himself of the dependency.”  

Yet despite his troubles Young was still working including a memorable turn in "The Twilight Zone" ep "Walking Distance" until several disastrous stage performances on the road. He was also fired on the first day of shooting “Blazing Saddles” after collapsing on the set due to withdrawal from alcohol.

 “Gig was a wasted human being…he was like a manic-depressive and paranoid,” a source said.

Young’s death wish was more than evident to pals as they witnessed the terrible slow descent of a once-bright star.

But not before Young took the symbol of his faded dreams with him – his wife – and then, a bullet to his own brain.