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Article Written & Published By: Sky News
Hollywood legend Burt Reynolds dies from heart attack aged 82
The Boogie Nights star, whose career spanned six decades, died in Florida after suffering a heart attack, his spokesman has said.
Hollywood legend Burt Reynolds has died aged 82.
A spokesman for Reynolds said the star died in Jupiter, Florida, on Thursday morning after suffering a heart attack.
Reynolds was known for starring in films including The Longest Yard, Boogie Nights and Smokey And The Bandit.
The actor had suffered with heart problems for years and underwent heart surgery in February 2010.
He was nominated for an Oscar for best supporting actor his role as adult film director Jack Horner in Boogie Nights in 1997.
Reynolds reportedly turned down the roles of Han Solo in Star Wars and John McClane in Die Hard, later saying he was more interested in enjoying himself than pushing his acting career to new heights.
In his 2015 memoir, But Enough About Me, he said: “I didn’t open myself to new writers or risky parts because I wasn’t interested in challenging myself as an actor. I was interested in having a good time.
“As a result, I missed a lot of opportunities to show I could play serious roles. By the time I finally woke up and tried to get it right, nobody would give me a chance.”
Reynolds turned down the role of James Bond in 1970 when George Lazenby quit following On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, saying an American could not play the character.
He later admitted he regretted the decision.
Tributes have been paid to Reynolds.
Arnold Schwarzenegger tweeted: “Burt Reynolds was one of my heroes. He was a trailblazer. He showed the way to transition from being an athlete to being the highest paid actor, and he always inspired me.
“He also had a great sense of humor – check out his Tonight Show clips. My thoughts are with his family.”
Actor Wesley Snipes referenced a line from Smokey And The Bandit in his tribute to Reynolds.
Snipes tweeted: “I will never forget our dinners, laughs and gems you dropped.
“Meeting you was one of the greater joys of my adult life and artistic career. You were the ‘Man’ then, now and forever in my book.
“10-4 Bandit, you’ve got nothing but open road now – love, WS. the Student.”
US comedian and TV presenter Steve Harvey tweeted a framed photograph of himself with Reynolds.
Harvey wrote: “Very sad to hearing about the passing of Burt Reynolds. He was a great actor, a philanthropist and a pioneer of the cool mustache. Thank you, Burt. You will be missed.”
Comedian Ricky Gervais said: “RIP Burt Reynolds. Seems his whole career was tongue in cheek. Always warm and funny.”
Adam Sandler called him a “true legend”.
Born in Lansing, Michigan, on 11 February 1936, Reynolds was a college football star, impressing for Florida State University.
His acting career began on stage in New York in the 1950s.
He married his second wife, the actress Loni Anderson, in 1988 before divorcing in 1993. The couple adopted a son, Quinton.