‘Embodiment of a sunbeam’: Canadian actor, musician Samantha Weinstein dies at 28

Samantha Weinstein is shown in this handout image. Weinstein, 28, is being remembered as an inspiring artist who lived 'the best life.' She died on May 14 at Toronto's Princess Margaret Hospital of ovarian cancer. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Dani DeLio

A Canadian actor and musician who won accolades from an early age is being remembered as an inspiring artist who lived “the best life” and continued to work even in her final days.

Samantha Weinstein, 28, died on May 14 at Toronto’s Princess Margaret Hospital after being diagnosed with ovarian cancer 2 1/2 years ago.

Weinstein had been acting since the age of six, with multiple credits to her name, including for voicing various characters in animated television series.

“Sam was actually a living embodiment of a sunbeam,” said her father, David Weinstein.

“She was so full of positive energy, anyone who ever met her would say that she just lit up every room she walked into.”

Weinstein played high school student Heather in the 2013 remake of “Carrie,” starring Chloe Grace Moretz and Julianne Moore, and was cast as Audrey in the 2011 comedy “Jesus Henry Christ,” starring Toni Collette.

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As a child, she had a starring role in “Big Girl,” which won the Best Canadian Short Film award at the 2005 Toronto International Film Festival.

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That role also earned her the 2006 Alliance of Canadian Cinema, Television and Radio Artists (ACTRA) award for outstanding female performance. At age 10, she became the youngest person to receive that honour.

Her father said she was also a “very prolific” voice actor – a type of artistry she loved because “she could just let loose and be crazy…and have fun.”

In recent weeks, she was still in the studio doing work for cartoons “Mittens & Pants” and “Dino Ranch,” despite her illness, he said.

Weinstein was also passionate about music; she was the lead singer and guitarist of the Toronto-based garage rock band Killer Virgins.

After her cancer diagnosis Weinstein resolved to live the best life she could, her father said, and that included travelling to Japan and Hawaii, among other places.

Her parents said philanthropy was an important part of her life and she’d asked them to continue donating to various charities on her behalf after her death.

And there’s more to Weinstein’s legacy, her mother said.

“The one thing that’s really struck me in the last week or so is … everyone who I talked to says that she changed their life,” Jojo Tindall-Weinstein said.

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“And I know that sounds really dramatic, but people are really serious when they say that. Her infectious, positive attitude actually changed the way other people live.”

Weinstein is also survived by her husband, sister, and other relatives.

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