The beloved father and Oscar-winning actor died on March 13, 2022, just one week before his 72nd birthday.
William Hurt, an Oscar-winner and one of the most recognizable male leads in the 1980s, died on Sunday of natural causes. It was just a week before his 72nd birthday.
Hurt died on Sunday morning at his home in Portland, Oregon, and was surrounded by family, according to a statement from his son Will Hurt, per Deadline. "It is with great sadness that the Hurt family mourns the passing of William Hurt, beloved father, and Oscar-winning actor, on March 13, 2022, one week before his 72nd birthday. He died peacefully, among family, of natural causes. The family requests privacy at this time," his son wrote.
Rest In Peace to an amazing talent William Hurt, beloved Thaddeus “Thunderbolt” Ross in our Marvel Cinematic Universe. pic.twitter.com/ituAUTRbsq— Marvel Studios (@MarvelStudios) March 13, 2022
Marvel Cinematic Universe fans will remember Hurt as military man Thaddeus “Thunderbolt” Ross in the Marvel movies, The Incredible Hulk (2008), Captain America: Civil War (2016), Avengers: Infinity War (2018), Avengers: Endgame (2019) and Black Widow (2021). Born in Washington, DC, Hurt attended Tufts University and eventually, the Juilliard School where he studied acting for three years alongside the likes of Christopher Reeve, Robin Williams, and Mandy Patinkin, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Rest In Peace, William Hurt.— Jo 🌻 (@JoJoFromJerz) March 13, 2022
One of my favorites of all time. 💔 pic.twitter.com/iWeS4aVuRr
In his early days of acting, Hurt often played quiet intellectual characters. His debut film role was in 1980, playing a scientist in the science fiction thriller, Altered States. In the '80s, he had popular roles in films such as Body Heat, The Big Chill, Broadcast News, and The Accidental Tourist. In his Oscar-winning role in the movie, Kiss of the Spider Woman, Hurt portrayed a gay man sharing a Brazilian prison cell with a revolutionary. Hurt was nominated for four Oscars over the course of his long career with three consecutive Best Actor Academy Awards for Kiss of the Spider Woman (1985), Children of a Lesser God (1986), and Broadcast News (1987). He was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role as Richie Cusack in David Cronenberg’s 2005 film A History of Violence. The remarkable thing is that the actor made a huge impact in the film with less than 10 minutes of screen time.
Sad news Oscar winning actor William Hurt died yesterday age 71.— PETER OXLEY (@oxley264) March 14, 2022
William's film credits included.
Broadcast News • The Accidental Tourist
Gorky Park • Kiss of the Spider Woman
A History of Violence • Altered States
Children of a Lesser God • Body Heat#RIP pic.twitter.com/sDujwSy8Qi
“I’m a character actor in a leading-man’s body,” he told PEOPLE back in 1985. “I want more mask than, say, Spencer Tracy did. But I don’t ‘pretend’ to be somebody else. Acting isn’t schizoid like that. Acting is about telling the truth. And it’s an adventure. It isn’t about what I know before I do it. It’s about what I can discover while it’s happening.” The actor's son Alexander Hurt, who is also an actor, told The New York Times in a phone interview that what he will remember about his father is “the pride he took in the work he did, and the pride we took—all of my siblings and I—in the work he did.” “He had a pure spirit,” he added, “and that’s what we’re all going to miss the most, and the way he challenged us all." Hurt was married to the actress, Mary Beth Hurt from 1971 to 1982 and was married to Heidi Henderson from 1989 to 1991, as per Variety. He is survived by his four children and two ex-wives.
William Hurt, a star in some of the most popular films of the 1980s and an Oscar winner for his role in “Kiss of the Spider Woman,” died on Sunday. He was 71. https://t.co/uVLHXi0Fxw pic.twitter.com/0PYq9WSCIt— The New York Times (@nytimes) March 14, 2022
Cover Image Source: Getty Images | Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris