Vale: Peter Fonda

Actor and director Peter Fonda, best known for Easy Rider, has died aged 79.

He died of respiratory failure due to lung cancer at his Los Angeles home.

“It is with deep sorrow that we share the news that Peter Fonda has passed away,” the family said in a statement. “… In one of the saddest moments of or lives, we are not able to find the appropriate words to express the pain in our hearts.”

Fonda was a member of Hollywood’s Fonda family, as the son of legendary actor Henry Fonda and the brother of actress and activist Jane Fonda. His daughter is actress Bridget Fonda.

“I am very sad. He was my sweet-hearted baby brother. The talker of the family. I have had beautiful alone time with him these last days. He went out laughing,” Jane Fonda said.

Fonda broke out as a star with his turn in the 1969 blockbuster Easy Rider, alongside Jack Nicholson and Dennis Hopper. He was nominated for an Academy Award for the screenplay, a nomination he shared with Hopper.

He directed his first film, The Hired Hand, in 1971 and was also nominated for a best actor Academy Award for his turn in Ulee’s Gold in 1998. In a prolific career his film credits included Open Season, Race with the Devil, 92 in the Shade, The Cannonball Run, Spasm, Certain Fury, Enemy, The Rose Garden, South Beach, Dead Fall, Escape from LA, The Limey, Ghost Rider, Copperhead and Boundaries.

TV credits included Wagon Train, In the Heat of the Night, The Tempest, The Gathering, CSI: NY and Hawaii Five-0.

In a 1994 CNN interview, Fonda said of his rebellious nature, “It was a desire to be heard — a father who was not communicative at all. I became quite angry as I learned that I wasn’t me — I was Henry Fonda’s son. I had no idea who he was; I didn’t want to be identified that way. I was demanding to be heard on my own grounds.”

One Comment:

  1. daveinprogress

    That’s sad. You know you’re ageing too when the offspring of actors you liked are passing away now!. There’s only a couple of clips of him in the wonderful Jane Fonda doco that aired last year. They had their own reactions and adaptation to being Henry Fonda’s offspring. Peter I thought always represented himself with dignity.

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