Harry Dean Stanton has passed away at the age of 91. Stanton not only had one of the longest acting careers in Hollywood history, but one of the most multi-faceted. A tall, thin man who was practically the definition of “grizzled character actor,” Stanton acted for more than 60 years, appearing in over 100 films and numerous classic movies and TV shows. He worked with everyone from David Lynch and Francis Ford Coppola to Martin Scorsese and John Hughes. Stanton kept going right until the end, both starring in a film at age 91, and appearing in Twin Peaks: The Return.
Stanton died Friday at the age of 91, THR reported. He passed away of natural causes in Los Angeles, a representative told the Reporter.
Stanton was born in 1926 in Irvine, Ky. He began acting while studying at the University of Kentucky, and following his service in the Navy in World War II – where he was a cook in the Pacific theater – he pursued work in Hollywood. Stanton appeared in a wide variety of TV series throughout the 1950s and 1960s, everything from Alfred Hitchcock Presents and The Untouchables to Bonanza.
Stanton’s first big movie part was in 1967’s Cool Hand Luke, and he appeared in many Westerns in the subsequent years, including 1973’s Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid. He even had a small part in The Godfather Part II, as one of the FBI agents guarding Frankie Pentangeli, and appeared in Ridley Scott’s Alien in 1979. His next big role after that was in Wim Wenders’ acclaimed Paris, Texas, in 1984.
In the 1980s, Stanton appeared in a diverse array of roles, including as Bud in Repo Man, Mr. Eckert in Red Dawn, Jack in Pretty in Pink and Paul in The Last Temptation of Christ. He was cast by Lynch for the first time in 1989’s Wild at Heart, and he would work with Lynch again in Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me, The Straight Story, and finally in Twin Peaks: The Return, where he reprised his role as trailer park manager Carl Rodd. Stanton is one of several actors, also including Catherine E. Coulson, Warren Frost and Miguel Ferrer, who was seen for one of the last times in Twin Peaks: The Return.
The most prominent role of Stanton’s latter career was as villainous polygamist leader Roman Grant on HBO’s Big Love, starting in 2006. He even popped up briefly in 2012’s The Avengers. Stanton was featured in the 2012 documentary Harry Dean Stanton: Partly Fiction, and played the lead earlier this year in the film Lucky. He is listed as appearing in Frank and Ava, which is set for release later this year.
Rest in Peace Harry Dean Stanton: July 14, 1926 – September 15, 2017
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