William Hurt, star of Kiss Of the Spider Woman and Gorky Park, has died just weeks shy of his own 72nd birthday.
While family statements say that Hurt died of natural causes, in 2018 Hurt had confirmed that he had been diagnosed with terminal prostate cancer that had spread to the bone.
In a statement on entertainment news website Deadline, Hurt’s son Will said “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.”
Beginning his career in the early ’80s, Hurt made his mark in both indie and cult hits such as Altered States and quickly became bankable, box office star and appearing in decade-defining films such as Body Heat and The Big Chill.
During this decade, the actor was garnered three consecutive Academy Award nominations including Kiss Of The Spider Woman and Children Of A Lesser God. The latter also starred his then-partner Marlee Matlin who went on to win Oscar for Best Actress.
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
Younger audiences however probably know him better as the annoyingly upright Thaddeus Russ in the Marvel Cinematic Universe where he most recently appeared in Black Widow alongside Scarlett Johansson.
Fellow actors have shared their grief over the passing of Hurt on social media.
Grateful that I had the opportunity to work with William Hurt. I admired his acting so much and watching his commitment in person was remarkable. My thoughts are with his family. pic.twitter.com/faDLANuq2E
— Topher Grace (@TopherGrace) March 13, 2022
Australian star Russell Crow shared his experience working with Hurt on the blockbuster Robin Hood, saying that he had been informed of Hurt’s tendency to ask character-based questions so he compiled a dossier to prepare. “[Hurt] sought me out when he arrived on set. I handed him the stack. Not sure if I’ve ever seen a bigger smile. RIP.”
William Hurt has passed. On Robin Hood, I was aware of his reputation for asking character based questions, so I had compiled a file on the life of William Marshall. He sought me out when he arrived on set. I handed him the stack. Not sure if I’ve ever seen a bigger smile. RIP.
— Russell Crowe (@russellcrowe) March 13, 2022
Fellow ’80s star Matthew Modine also took to Twitter to share his condolences with the Hurt family.
I had the great pleasure of working beside William Hurt in Too Big To Fail. Bill was a consummate professional. Continually searching for greater truth and human understanding. Blessings to his family and friends. RIP. pic.twitter.com/hOJPtPbVf9
— Matthew Modine (@MatthewModine) March 13, 2022