January 2, 2013

A Tribute to the Fallen

In 2012, we lost one of the all time great film directors, Tony Scott. He was one of my favourite filmmakers and I was genuinely upset when I heard the news of his tragic suicide. Quite a lot of people from our favourite action movies have sadly passed away over the years and many of us may not even know about it. So here is a tribute to some of our fallen movie heroes.







Charles Bronson (November 3, 1921 – August 30, 2003) One of my all time favourite actors and one of the original action heroes, Bronson was one of the coolest men in cinema history. Most famous for his role in the Death Wish series, I still hate that he’s gone.







Steve McQueen (March 24, 1930 – November 7, 1980) Another one of the coolest actors of all time, Steve McQueen was taken far too young but his legacy lives one. Bullitt still as the greatest car chase of all time.







Michael Clarke Duncan (December 10, 1957 September 3, 2012) – This was a huge shock when I heard he had passed of a heart attack in 2012. His role in Daredevil, Armageddon and The Green Mile is etched in my mind.







Patrick Swayze (August 18, 1952 September 14, 2009) Hard to believe he’s been gone for over 3 years now; any time I watch Road House or Point Break I feel sad that we won’t get to see any more Patrick Swayze movies in the future.







Heath Ledger  (4 April 1979 – 22 January 2008) Arguably one of the most tragic losses of recent memory, Ledger was about to become one of biggest stars on the planet after his Oscar winning turn as the Joker in the Dark Knight.







J T Walsh (September 28, 1943 – February 27, 1998) J T Walsh is best known for the amount of villains/bureaucrats that he played and no matter the quality of the film, he would always be fantastic.







Bruce Lee (27 November 1940 – 20 July 1973) One of the greatest tragedies in movie history was the untimely death of Bruce Lee. His influence is still being felt in martial arts movies worldwide and we often wonder what he would be doing if he were alive today.







Brandon Lee (February 1, 1965 – March 31, 1993) This was just so weird, after the mysterious death of his father, Brandon Lee also ended up dying in tragic circumstances. He was on the road to becoming the next big action star and his final role in the Crow was fantastic and remains one of the all-time great comic book movies.







David Carradine (December 8, 1936 – June 3, 2009) Another death surrounded by mystery, David Carradine was having a great comeback since his role in Kill Bill but it was tragically cut short.







Brion James (February 20, 1945 – August 7, 1999) Brion James was a big shock; he’s another actor who played a lot of villains but he was always entertaining in every role. Tango & Cash, The Fifth Element and more. We still miss you, sir.







Kevin Peter Hall  (May 9, 1955 – April 10, 1991) He was best known for playing The Predator in Predator 1 & 2 before being killed in a car accident.







Robert Ginty (November 14, 1948 – September 21, 2009) I only found this out recently and was pretty shocked. He was the star of The Exterminator movies but sadly died of cancer in 2009.







Jillian Kesner (August 9, 1949 – December 5, 2007) Beautiful and talented, Jillian Kesner starred in a few Exploitation movies including Firecracker but would later become a historian who worked with her late husband, Gary Graver, to preserve the work and legacy of director Orson Welles.







Jonathan Brandis (April 13, 1976 – November 12, 2003) Another heartbreaking tragedy; Brandis is best known for his role in Sidekicks alongside Chuck Norris but also the Neverending Story Sequels and Stephen King’s IT. He sadly hung himself in 2003.







Ron Silver (July 2, 1946 – March 15, 2009) Best known to action fans as the villain in Timecop but he also starred in Silent Rage with Chuck Norris. I remember being really upset when I heard of his death.







Alexander Godunov (November 28, 1949 – May 18, 1995) Karl From Die Hard was killed in a car crash in 1995 but his role in the Bruce Willis classic will never be forgotten.

We’ve lost a lot of legends over the years and these are just a select few whose contribution to action cinema should never be forgotten.

About the Author

Eoin Friel
Eoin Friel
I grew up watching JCVD, Sly and Arnold destroy bad guys, blow things up and spew one-liners like it's a fashion statement. Action is everything I go to the movies for and the reason I came up with this site is to share my love for the genre with everyone.



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