Another year and another group of Hollywood and media industry icons left us in 2017, from TV legends like Mary Tyler Moore to comedy greats like Jerry Lewis and Don Rickles, and cultural standbys like Hugh Hefner.
There were unexpected losses, like Bill Paxton’s death at age 61 after complications during surgery; Brad Grey, the Paramount chief and co-founder of Hollywood’s powerful Brillstein-Grey Entertainment, dying of cancer at 59; and rocker Tom Petty Petty, who died at age 66 just a week after his Rock and Roll Hall of Fame band Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers ended their 40th anniversary tour with a three-night stand at the Hollywood Bowl. Roger Ailes, the architect of Fox News Channel who exited the cable news juggernaut in 2016 amid multiple allegations of sexual harassment, died from a fall in his home less than a year after he resigned. He was 77.
Deadline's Best Of 2017 And Look Ahead To 2018
There were also a pair of rare on-set stuntperson deaths this year, John Bernecker on the set of The Walking Dead and Joi “SJ” Harris, who crashed while filming a motorcycle stunt on Deadpool 2.
Other Hollywood passings include on the acting side a James Bond in Roger Moore, Oscar winner Martin Landau, John Hurt, Jeanne Moreau, Glenne Headly, Adam West, Erin Moran, Mike Connors, Miguel Ferrer, Jay Thomas, Stephen Furst, Richard Hatch, Om Puri, Wood Moy, Roy Dotrice, Emmanuelle Riva, June Foray, Jim Nabors, Della Reese, John Hillerman, Bernie Casey, Barbara Cook, Frank Vincent, Mireille Darc, Rose Marie and Harry Dean Stanton.
On that actor list is Sam Shepard, among several prominent writers who died in 2017 including Paddington creator Michael Bond; authors Robert James Waller and William Peter Blatty; screenwriter Joe Bologna; columnists Jimmy Breslin, Liz Smith and Frank Deford; and Robert Osborne, the author and film historian who helped launch Turner Classic Movies. Also, playwrights A.R Gurney, Bernard Pomerance and Thomas Meehan, among several theater luminaries to have passed away this year including Broadway producer Stuart Thompson, composer/lyricist Michael Friedman, and Sir Peter Hall.
Prolific director Jonathan Demme died this year at age 73. George A. Romero, the horror-master writer-director, also passed as did The Endless Summer documentary helmer Bruce Brown.
Among the musicians lost this year were rock pioneer Chuck Berry at age 90, actor-singer David Cassidy, rockers Chester Bennington, Chris Cornell and Malcolm Young, country icons Glen Campbell and Mel Tillis, Al Jarreau, French star Johnny Hallyday, Troy Gentry and Fats Domino.
Click above for Deadline’s photo gallery of the year’s notable industry deaths.
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