The Nerd Stash is sad to hear about the unexpected passing of Bill Paxton due to complications from heart surgery. He was 61. The news was initially reported in a statement from the family,
“It is with heavy hearts we share the news that Bill Paxton has passed away due to complications from surgery. A loving husband and father, Bill began his career in Hollywood working on films in the art department and went on to have an illustrious career spanning four decades as a beloved and prolific actor and filmmaker.”
Bill Paxton was born in Forth Worth, Texas on May 17th, 1955. One of his earliest acting roles was as a thug in the original 1984 Terminator. From there, he went on to star in numerous films, tv shows and even a video game. He was even nominated for an Emmy on the TV series Hatfields and McCoys. Despite his well known minor roles, Bill Paxton gained increasing fame throughout the 90’s. He starred in films such as Tombstone along with Kurt Russel, Apollo 13 alongside Tom Hanks and Kevin Bacon and was the lead in the 1996 film Twister with Helen Hunt.
Getting into the early 2000’s, Bill Paxton made his directorial debut with the film Frailty. While the film currently holds a 73% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, the film was considered extraordinary work by the late Roger Ebert. “Frailty is an extraordinary work, concealing in its depths not only unexpected story turns but also implications, hidden at first, that make it even deeper and more sad.” Paxton later went on to direct the film The Greatest Game Ever Played which again received mostly positive reviews.
Bill Paxton continued to work on films up until his passing. His last film The Circle, is set to release on April 28th. He stars along Tom Hanks and Emma Watson about “A young tech worker who takes a job at a powerful Internet corporation, quickly rises up the company’s ranks, and soon finds herself in a perilous situation concerning privacy, surveillance and freedom. She comes to learn that her decisions and actions will determine the future of humanity.”
More recently, Bill Paxton portrayed the playable character Khan in Call of Duty Advanced Warfare: Exo Zombies. He voiced alongside Jon Bernthal, John Malkovich, Rose McGowan and Bruce Campbell. He also starred in the TV adaption of Training Day, which is set 15 years after the events of the film. Before his death, filming for the series wrapped in December, with the last episode set to air on March 9th.
Fellow Celebrities react tot he passing of Bill Paxton
Bill Paxton was, simply, a wonderful man. A wonderful man… Hanx.
— Tom Hanks (@tomhanks) February 26, 2017
Bill Paxton could play any role, but he was best at being Bill – a great human being with a huge heart. My thoughts are with his family.
— Arnold (@Schwarzenegger) February 26, 2017
You were a great friend to me, Bill. AND one of the finest actors to share a set with. Sending so much love to Bill Paxton's family.
— Charlize Theron (@CharlizeAfrica) February 26, 2017
Bill Paxton was simply one of the greatest people ever. To know him was to love him. I loved him. Huge love to Louise, Lydia and James. Xo
— Jeffrey Dean Morgan (@JDMorgan) February 26, 2017
Bill Paxton was hands down one of the greatest guys that I have ever met. I feel lucky to have called him my friend. Bill, I love you. RIP.
— Aaron Paul (@aaronpaul_8) February 26, 2017
A photo of Bill Paxton at just 8 years old can be seen on the day of John F Kennedy’s assassination. He was in the crowd as Kennedy emerged from his hotel that morning on 1963. That photo is even on display on the sixth-floor museum in Dallas, Texas. He’s the child being held up.
Mr. Paxton is survived by his wife of 30 years, Lydia and his two children, James and Lydia.
While I didn’t know Mr. Paxton, I’ve greatly enjoyed his work throughout the years. My oldest son even knows his work as Khan in Exo Zombies along with Twister and Aliens. To quote the late Ultimate Warrior,
” Every man’s heart one day beats its final beat. His lungs breathe their final breath. And if what that man did in his life makes the blood pulse through the body of others and makes them bleed deeper and something larger than life, then his essence, his spirit, will be immortalized by the storytellers, by the loyalty, by the memory of those who honor him and make the running the man did live forever.