USA actor Harry Dean Stanton dead at 91

USA actor Harry Dean Stanton dead at 91

The longtime character actor passed away from natural causes at at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

The Kentucky native had memorable roles in films such as Alien (1979), Paris, Texas (1984), Repo Man (1984) and Pretty in Pink (1986).

For decades Stanton lived in a small, disheveled house overlooking the San Fernando Valley, and was a fixture at the West Hollywood landmark Dan Tana's. Occasionally you would hear Stanton sing; music was his other love - he sang and played harmonica onstage and off.

1971 saw Stanton in a short but unforgettable role in Two-Lane Blacktop (1971), as gay hitchhiker who places his hand on Warren Oates' character's knee.

Every once in a while he was cast as a normal guy - he played Molly Ringwald's father in Pretty in Pink - but that was about it. Stanton was in six David Lynch movies and played the polygamist cult leader Roman Grant on HBO's Big Love.

Stanton's last movie, "Lucky", about the spiritual journey of a 90-year-old atheist, is to have a red carpet premiere at the Kentucky Theater Sept. 28 at this year's Harry Dean Stanton Festival, said Fred Mills, manager of the theater.

Screenwriter Sam Shepard, had met Harry Dean Stanton in a bar in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

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When given a rare turn as a leading man, Stanton more than made the most of it.

"The great Harry Dean Stanton has left us", Lynch said Friday. You are really going to be missed Harry Dean!

"Repo Man", discharged that same year, turned into another mark film: Stanton featured as the world-fatigued manager of an auto repossession firm who educates Estevez in the traps of the unsafe exchange.

When Stanton was touring with a children's play, he suddenly quit during a stop-over in California, realizing his desire to work in television and film instead. "Well, I realized early on that if I became an actor, I could play a writer and a sculptor and a painter and be all the things you just don't have time to be in your lifetime".

The film's director, John Carroll Lynch, said he had "the honour to watch over Harry's final performance in intimate, exquisite detail".

He never married but enjoyed a long relationship with actress Rebecca De Mornay, who was 35 years his junior.

Our thoughts are with Harry's friends and family during this hard time.