Hollywood actor William Hurt has died at the age of 71. He died Sunday in Portland, Oregon, of complications from prostate cancer, his son Will told US media Deadline and The Hollywood Reporter.
Hurt had particular success in the 1980s, winning the 1986 Oscar for best actor for the film Kiss of the Spider Woman. In it he played the gay prisoner Luis Molina, who is confined in a South American prison along with other political prisoners during a military dictatorship.
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The actor, born in 1950 in Washington, the US capital, was nominated three more times for the most important film award in the world: in 1987 as a teacher in the drama for the deaf “God’s Forgotten Children”, in 1988 as a newscaster in the media satire “Nachrichtenfieber – Broadcast News” and in 2006 as best supporting actor in the gangster drama “A History of Violence”. More recently, he had success as General Thaddeus “Thunderbolt” Ross in several Marvel comic book adaptations. Hurt, who was born in Washington in 1950, was also known as a stage actor.
The father of four children had often tried to keep his private life a secret. Former girlfriend and film partner Marlee Matlin wrote in her memoir about alleged abuse in their two-year relationship. Hurt was married twice in the 1980s and 1990s. One of his children arose from a relationship with French actress Sandrine Bonnaire. Another woman, Hurt, had a son who made headlines with a child support lawsuit.
Hurt’s friend, Gerry Byrne, confirmed the death to Variety. Fellow performers like Antonio Banderas and Mark Ruffalo expressed their condolences on social media. Russell Crowe recalled on Twitter: “During Robin Hood, I knew he had a reputation for asking other people questions about his characters. So I made a folder on the life of William Marshall. When he got to the set, he came to see me. I gave him my stack.” I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a bigger smile. Rest in peace.” (dpa)