Monday, February 27, 2017

Bill Paxton gone too soon

Bill Paxton was only 61 when he died mysteriously from what is being called "complications from surgery," whatever the hell that means. I’ve been told it involved a stroke he suffered following heart surgery. I wasn’t even aware of his death until Jennifer Anniston mentioned it last night, just prior to the "in memoriam" segment of the Academy Awards telecast. And, c’mon, the Academy had plenty of time to insert Paxton into that tribute. The fact that it didn’t is, in my mind, the biggest screw up since it failed to mention Farrah Fawcett in a similar tribute the year she died. I am more disturbed by this omission than I was about fumbling the announcement last night of the best picture winner.

Paxton was a much underrated actor, never nominated for an Academy Award. I consider his best performance in the equally under-appreciated A Simple Plan.

I also thought he was gave a flawless performance in One False Move, another film that is not as well known as it should be.

He did receive an Emmy nomination, however, for his performance in the miniseries Hatfields & McCoys, as well as three Golden Globe nominations for the television series Big Love on HBO. He was arguably best known, however, for the movies Twister, Apollo 13 and Titanic.

Paxton was born May 17, 1955 in Fort Worth Texas. He was in the crowd when President Kennedy left the Hotel Texas in the morning of Nov. 22, 1963, the day Kennedy was assassinated. You can see him being hoisted on the shoulders of his mother in this picture which is contained in the archives of the Sixth Floor Museum in Dallas.

His family issued the following statement yesterday:

"It is with heavy hearts we share the news that Bill Paxton has passed away due to complications from surgery. A loving husband and father, Bill began his career in Hollywood working on films in the art department and went on to have an illustrious career spanning four decades as a beloved and prolific actor and filmmaker. Bill's passion for the arts was felt by all who knew him, and his warmth and tireless energy were undeniable. We ask to please respect the family's wish for privacy as they mourn the loss of their adored husband and father."

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