By PopZette Staff | August 16, 2019
He was 79 years old.
And actor Peter Fonda — who co-wrote and starred in the seminal 1960s counterculture film “Easy Rider” — is now gone.
He had suffered respiratory failure due to lung cancer.
“In one of the saddest moments of our lives, we are not able to find the appropriate words to express the pain in our hearts. As we grieve, we ask that you respect our privacy,” the family statement noted.
— Rolling Stone (@RollingStone) August 16, 2019
'Easy Rider' writer and actor Peter Fonda, a key counter-culture figure, has died at 79. https://t.co/pW5V2LQqlm
— The Associated Press (@AP) August 16, 2019
“And, while we mourn the loss of this sweet and gracious man, we also wish for all to celebrate his indomitable spirit and love of life. In honor of Peter, please raise a glass to freedom,” the statement also said.
Peter Fonda — born into a celebrated Hollywood family — made sure to make his own way.
He earned a Best Original Screenplay Oscar nomination for his co-writing of “Easy Rider.”
But he lost that award ultimately to William Goldman’s script for “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid,” as Fox News pointed out in a piece on Fonda.
Nearly 30 years after that, the actor grabbed a Best Actor nomination for his work in the 1997 film “Ulee’s Gold.” He lost out again — to contemporary Jack Nicholson’s efforts in “As Good As It Gets.”
But Fonda did earn himself a Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Series, Miniseries or Television Movie for his efforts in the 1999 Showtime original “The Passion of Ayn Rand.”
Fonda was certainly no “easy rider” when it came to expressing political opinions or drawing eyeballs on social media. The actor was in the forefront of anti-Trump resistance for some time.
Last summer, he openly advocated for Democratic voters to commit a felony in the fall 2018 midterm elections.
At one time estranged from his father, Peter Fonda grew closer to Henry Fonda as the years went on; the elder Fonda died in 1982.
In a since-deleted tweet, Fonda called on Democrats who had voting-age children to commit the act of filling out their ballots — and turn those ballots in.
“Then we have to take them by the hand and lead them to the water and teach them to drink! If you have a millennial in your family, take their early ballots, fill them out and mail them in, or take the ballot to the voting place and give it to the officials … no more worrying!” Fonda wrote last year on Twitter.
Fonda also made waves early in 2018 when he called for President Donald Trump’s youngest child, Barron, to be ripped from his mother Melania Trump’s arms — and “put in a cage with pedophiles.”
As many outlets reported, Fonda was born in New York in 1940.
He was 10 years old and his sister Jane was 12 when their mother, Frances Ford Seymour, passed away by her own hand.
At one time estranged from his father, he grew closer to Henry Fonda as the years went on; the elder Fonda died in 1982.
Peter Fonda studied acting in college and made his stage debut in 1961 in the Broadway production of “Blood, Sweat, and Standley Poole,” as People magazine noted.
This piece originally appeared in LifeZette and is used by permission.
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