Joshua “Li’l Boy” Shintani, an actor known for his role in the 2001 movie “Shallow Hal,” died on Nov. 25 in Kauai. He was 32.
According to TMZ, his mother rushed him to the emergency room, where doctors discovered he was suffering from advanced pneumonia.
The Kauai native was a graduate of Waimea High School. “Shallow Hal” co-director Peter Farrelly cast him after a chance encounter outside a public library, where he was playing his ukulele. The role made Shintani a star in Hawaii, but marked his only movie appearance.
In “Shallow Hal,” a romantic comedy directed by Peter and Robert Farrelly, Jack Black plays a man who only judges women by their looks. Life coach Tony Robbins hypnotizes Hal into only seeing a person’s inner beauty, so when he meets Rosemary (Gwyneth Paltrow), who is obese, he sees her as a slender trophy blonde.
While Paltrow played both the real and idealized versions of Rosemary, some other characters were portrayed by two actors. Shintani played the overweight version of Li’l Boy while the slimmer version was played by former Major League Baseball pitcher Ron Darling.
In a scene with Jason Alexander as Hal’s best friend, Shintani plays “Never Forget Where I’m From” on the ukulele. The song was included on the movie’s soundtrack.