Peter Fonda, a counterculture icon for his role in the 1969 film “Easy Rider,” has passed away at age 79.
The two-time Oscar nominee was the son of Hollywood legend Henry Fonda, brother of actress Jane Fonda, and father of actress Bridget Fonda.
His publicist confirmed his death this morning and released this statement on his family’s behalf.
It is with deep sorrow that we share the news that Peter Fonda has passed away. Fonda, 79 years old, passed away peacefully on Friday morning, August 16th at 11:05am at his home in Los Angeles surrounded by family. The official cause of death was respiratory failure due to lung cancer.
In one of the saddest moments of our lives, we are not able to find the appropriate words to express the pain in our hearts. As we grieve, we ask that you respect our privacy.
And, while we mourn the loss of this sweet and gracious man, we also wish for all to celebrate his indomitable spirit and love of life.
In honor of Peter, please raise a glass to freedom. From his Family.
Fonda co-wrote, produced and co-starred in the low-budget hit “Easy Rider,” which was released on July 14, 1969. He shared an Oscar nomination for Best Adapted screenplay with costar Dennis Hopper and “Dr. Strangelove” screenwriter Terry Southern.
He was also nominated for Oscar nominee for Best Actor in his role as a Vietnam veteran turned beekeeper in “Ulee’s Gold.”
His many other films include Steven Soderbergh’s “The Limey,” “Race With the Devil,” “3:10 to Yuma,” and “Escape From L.A.,” not to mention the many films paying homage to his “Easy Rider” character, including “Wild Hogs” and “Ghost Rider.”
It was on the Roger Corman film “The Trip” that he met Jack Nicholson and Dennis Hopper, who went on to collaborate on “Easy Rider.”
Survivors include his wife Margaret DeVogelere, daughter Bridget Fonda, and a son, Justin. No memorial plans have been announced.
A 50th anniversary screening of “Easy Rider” was already planned for New York’s Radio City Music Hall on September 20. The film, which starred Fonda, Hopper and Nicholson, will be shown in sync with a live performance of its soundtrack from Steppenwolf’s John Kay, the band whose song “Born To Be Wild” was the movie’s anthem.
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