William Hurt dies at 71

Altered States star enjoyed a 44 year screen career

by Jennie Kermode

William Hurt in 2005
William Hurt in 2005 Photo: Tony Shek, licenced by Creative Commons

Three time Oscar nominee William Hurt has passed away at the age of 71, just a week before his birthday. The star, who was known for playing quiet, intelligent characters, received Academy attention for his work in Kiss Of The Spider Woman, Children Of A Lesser God and Broadcast News, but recently become known to a new generation of fans as General Thaddeus 'Thunderbolt' Ross, sworn enemy of the Hulk, in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Enjoying early success with a role in Altered States which earned him a Golden Globe nomination, Hurt also starred in hits including The Big Chill, The Accidental Tourist, Dark City, Robin Hood, A History Of Violence and The Village.

Alongside his big screen roles, Hurt enjoyed a lengthy television career and was a successful stage actor. He starred as Duke Leto Atreides in the TV mini-series adaptation of Dune.

Hurt is understood to have died surrounded by his family at his home in Portland, Oregon. He had been suffering from prostate cancer for some time and the disease had spread to his bones. He is survived by his four children. His final films, Edward Enderby and Men Of Granite, are due to be released next year.

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