Bill Paxton of Training Day, Big Love dead at 61

Paxton -

There is some very devastating news to report this morning: Actor Bill Paxton is dead at the age of 61 following complications from surgery. Multiple sources are confirming the news, which is especially devastating given that it comes on the same day that many people are celebrating some of the best in entertainment at the Oscars – and Bill Paxton was one of the greats.

While Paxton may be known to some for his prestigious film career and a wide array of roles on the silver screen, we’ll remember him best for his role as the family patriarch in HBO’s Big Love, a show that was inventive and in some ways ahead of its time. Meanwhile, he was also currently starring in a new series for CBS called Training Day (a remake of the film starring Ethan Hawke and Denzel Washington). It’s unclear at this time as to whether or not production was done with the show at the time of his passing. The series airs on Thursday nights at 10:00 p.m. Eastern.

In a statement per TMZ, the actor’s family confirmed his death with the following:

“It is with heavy hearts we share the news that Bill Paxton has passed away due to complications from surgery … [Paxton had an] illustrious career spanning four decades as a beloved and prolific actor and flimmaker. Bill’s passion for the arts was felt by all who knew him, and his warmth and tireless energy were undeniable.”

We realize that it is last-minute, but we hope that the Oscars can find some way to acknowledge him tonight, even if there is not the time necessary to attach him to the In Memoriam segment that airs during the show. He joins a long list of luminaries who passed over the course of the past year, including Debbie Reynolds, Carrie Fisher, and Gene Wilder. The heart and the passion that he brought to everything that he did was legendary and for us we will remember him best from his iconic role in Aliens, which is one of our favorite movies of all time.

What we know is that Paxton left behind a tremendous resume of work, and we are sure that there are many people out there who will miss him dearly (us included). Our thoughts and condolences are with his loved ones during this devastating time.

Feel free to share your thoughts and condolences in the attached comments. (Photo: CBS.)

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