When it comes to action, sci-fi and horror, few stars shine brighter than the legendary Bill Paxton. It is with profound sadness that we say goodbye to the prolific genre actor who brought us so much joy in so many iconic roles over the years. Bill’s family released a statement today announcing his death from surgery complications. The husband and father of two was 61 years old.
There aren’t many people who can say they’ve been killed on screen by an Alien, a Predator, and a Terminator. Bill Paxton is one of them. His turn as Hudson in Aliens (1986) is one of his most memorable and quoted roles. He acted alongside Danny Glover and Gary Busey as Detective Jerry Lambert in Predator 2 (1992). In 1984, he told a naked future Governator he was “a couple cans short of a six pack” before dying in a back alley in The Terminator. If you grew up watching movies in the ’80s and ’90s, you know what a huge talent he was. Paxton’s blockbuster appearances over the years include Titanic, Tombstone, Twister, Weird Science, Apollo 13, and True Lies.
Bill Paxton starred in a number of horror films over the years, including the terrifying Frailty (which he also directed), and the horror comedy Club Dread. He also appeared in an episode of Tales From the Crypt. In 1987, Paxton turned in one of the all time greatest vampire performances as Severen in the classic Near Dark. The film, directed by Kathryn Bigelow, also starred Aliens alum Jenette Goldstein and Lance Henriksen (the other guy killed on screen by an Alien, Predator, and a Terminator). Sinister, cruel, and insane, Paxton’s Severen showed us all the darkest corners of immortality.
Celebrities and fans are taking to social media en masse to mourn his loss today. While many Paxton lovers are saying “Game Over,” a friend of mine suggests memorializing Bill with a lesser known quote from Tombstone: “Look at all the stars. You look up and you think, ‘God made all this and He remembered to make a little speck like me.” It’s kind of flattering, really.'”
Rest in peace, Bill.