Hoffman's priest said he'll be remembered as a 'lovely person'

Hoffman's priest said he'll be remembered as a 'lovely person'

Philip Seymour Hoffman's priest will remember him as a "lovely person."

Fr. James Martin SJ, who helped the late actor prepare for his role as Father Flynn in the 2008 movie 'Doubt' and presided over his funeral mass at the Church of Saint Ignatius Loyola in New York on Friday, said the actor was "very down-to-earth" and "fun to be with."

The Jesuit priest told PEOPLE.com: "He was a lovely person, very down-to-earth. I learned about humility from him. He never put on airs. Whenever he talked about being in a movie, he would just say, 'Yeah, I got this job.' He would never say, 'I'm the lead.' Or 'I'm starring in 'Capote.' ' Then I'd read about it in the papers and learn what it was."

The duo, who first met in 2003, spent a lot of time in the church together when the priest taught the Oscar-winner how to celebrate mass for his role in 'Doubt'.

He added: "He was really fun to be with. He was so intent on getting everything right. I remember he asked if a priest would have 3 x 5 cards during a homily. Small details. He listened to what I had to say, but he also knew his craft. When you watched him act, you got a sense of what the word 'vocation' really means. He was born to do this."

The late actor's family members, including his estranged partner, Mimi O'Donnell, and their three children, Cooper, 10, Tallulah, seven, and Willa, five, were among the 400 mourners at his funeral mass.

Many of his famous friends, including Meryl Streep, Diane Keaton, Julianne Moore and Cate Blanchett, also attended the ceremony.

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