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Dennis Hopper dead at 74

No-QuarterNo-Quarter Nothing to FearBut Fear ItselfRegistered User regular
edited June 2010 in Debate and/or Discourse
http://www.people.com/people/article/0,,20337801,00.html
Dennis Hopper, whose pot-addled Billy in Easy Rider and psychopathic Frank Booth in Blue Velvet helped put the icon in iconoclastic, has died after a decade-long battle with prostate cancer. He was 74.

The legendary actor died about 9 a.m. Saturday surrounded by family in his Los Angeles home.

Taken ill with flu-like symptoms last September, Hopper later said he was suffering with prostate cancer. Family members told PEOPLE that the disease had spread to other organs in his system.

Early Rebel Role
Born in Dodge City, Kansas – his father, Jay Hopper, reputedly was an intelligence officer in the pre-CIA Office of Strategic Services, which explained his son's peripatetic American upbringing – Hopper was 19 when he was cast in his very first movie opposite none other than James Dean: 1955's Rebel Without a Cause. Hopper played a character named "Goon."

Known off-screen as a rabble-rouser and impossible when it came to taking direction, the young Method actor was soon virtually blacklisted from movies. Resorting to TV dramas and even moonlighting as a Vogue photographer, his turnaround came in 1969 when he joined forces with Peter Fonda, screenwriter Terry Southern and a then unknown B-movie actor named Jack Nicholson to costar in and direct a $400,000 road picture called Easy Rider.

The movie proved a box-office phenomenon, launched the youth movement in Hollywood and turned Hopper into a household name, though not necessary a bankable one. His next directorial effort, 1971's The Last Movie, literally went up in pot smoke.

At the same time, his first marriage – to Hollywood princess Brooke Hayward (daughter of two legends, actress Margaret Sullavan and producer Leland Hayward) – flamed out, and Hopper would go on to marry (and divorce) four more times – including the singer-actress Michelle Phillips, to whom he was wed for nearly a week.

As far as children were concerned, the 1961-69 marriage to Hayward produced a daughter, Marin, now 47; with wife Daria Halprin (1972-76) he had a daughter Ruthanna, 35; and with Katherine LaNasa (1989-92), a son, Henry, 19.

Fighting convention to the very end, only last January, amid bitter claims about her out-of-control spending, a direly sick Hopper filed for divorce from his fifth wife, Victoria Duffy, whom he wed in 1996. The couple also had a daughter, Galen, born in 2003 and to whom Hopper was said to be devoted.

TV Actor and Elder Statesman
Professionally, Hopper managed to keep working, with his career kick-started again by his tour-de-force role in David Lynch's surrealistic 1986 Blue Velvet. In the last decade, when he was devoting himself to art photography, Hopper played several roles on TV, such as himself on Entourage and a villain on 24.

At the time of his work on the Fox series, he told Florida's St. Petersburg Times, "When I was in my 20s, I remember Vincent Price telling me, 'You should play bad guys. You're going to make a great bad guy. And I thought, 'Boy is he crazy. Just because he plays bad guys, he thinks I'm going to be playing bad guys.' But he was right. I make a pretty good living playing the bad guy."

And while he fit comfortably into his real-life role as a kind of Hollywood elder statesman – Hopper jolted many of his early fans by becoming an ardent Republican – the old troublemaker could still look back and see there were times when his excesses overwhelmed him. (In 1982, he was committed to a Los Angeles psychiatric ward after suffering psychotic hallucinations from cocaine and alcohol.)

"Instead of directing 20 films in my life. I have done only six," he told PEOPLE in 1990, expressing regret for the costs of his addictions. "I haven't left a meaningful body of work."

Maybe so, but as Viggo Mortensen, who costarred with the lifelong rebel in 1991's The Indian Runner and 1993's Boiling Point, told the crowd on March 26, 2010, when a frail-looking Hopper received his star on the Hollywood Blvd. Walk of Fame, what set Dennis Hopper apart was "his ability to instill ... fearlessness ... as an artist and friend."

See what other readers have to say about this story – or leave a comment of your own

:( RIP you psycho. He will be missed.

No-Quarter on

Posts

  • JacobkoshJacobkosh Gamble a stamp. I can show you how to be a real man!Moderator mod
    edited May 2010
  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    Hopper always struck me as an A-list actor playing far too many B-roles in B-movies. He usually appeared out of place when doing it, too. Too often his talent was wasted.

    mcdermott on
  • ShogunShogun Hair long; money long; me and broke wizards we don't get along Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    Pop quiz hot shot

    RIP

    Shogun on
  • KrathoonKrathoon Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    He had a good run, though. The guy practically stole the scene of whatever he was in.

    Krathoon on
  • No-QuarterNo-Quarter Nothing to Fear But Fear ItselfRegistered User regular
    edited May 2010
    I wanna put up the scene from True Romance with Hopper and Christopher Walken having their demented dialogue about Sicilian Moorish origins. Far too many N-Bombs get dropped though.

    No-Quarter on
  • No-QuarterNo-Quarter Nothing to Fear But Fear ItselfRegistered User regular
    edited May 2010
    No-Quarter on
  • RaakamRaakam Too many years... CanadalandRegistered User regular
    edited May 2010
    Gary Coleman, Dennis Hopper... they always come in 3s. Who is next? :(
    RIP

    Raakam on
    My padherder
    they don't it be like it is but it do
  • ShogunShogun Hair long; money long; me and broke wizards we don't get along Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    Think I'm gonna watch Water World tonight.

    Shogun on
  • deowolfdeowolf Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    No-Quarter wrote: »
    I wanna put up the scene from True Romance with Hopper and Christopher Walken having their demented dialogue about Sicilian Moorish origins. Far too many N-Bombs get dropped though.

    It's the best thing Tarrentino ever wrote.

    deowolf on
    [SIGPIC]acocoSig.jpg[/SIGPIC]
  • JacobkoshJacobkosh Gamble a stamp. I can show you how to be a real man!Moderator mod
    edited May 2010
    One of the best movies Hopper was ever in, and one of the least known, is the awesome 1994 western/noir Red Rock West. It's about Nicolas Cage as a drifter who wanders into a sleazy small-town bar and is mistaken by the owner for a hitman, "Lyle from Dallas," who the owner has hired to come up and kill his wife. Hopper plays the real Lyle from Dallas who is understandably displeased at this turn of events when he finally shows up. It's a great role and he exudes menace from his very pores.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WGpM9kNEiN0

    Jacobkosh on
  • deowolfdeowolf Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    Raakam wrote: »
    Gary Coleman, Dennis Hopper... they always come in 3s. Who is next? :(
    RIP

    The guy from Slipknot?

    deowolf on
    [SIGPIC]acocoSig.jpg[/SIGPIC]
  • MyDcmbrMyDcmbr Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    deowolf wrote: »
    Raakam wrote: »
    Gary Coleman, Dennis Hopper... they always come in 3s. Who is next? :(
    RIP

    The guy from Slipknot?

    FAMOUS people.

    98% of people are saying WTH is Slipknot?

    MyDcmbr on
    Steam
    So we get stiff once in a while. So we have a little fun. What’s wrong with that? This is a free country, isn’t it? I can take my panda any place I want to. And if I wanna buy it a drink, that’s my business.
  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    MyDcmbr wrote: »
    deowolf wrote: »
    Raakam wrote: »
    Gary Coleman, Dennis Hopper... they always come in 3s. Who is next? :(
    RIP

    The guy from Slipknot?

    FAMOUS people.

    98% of people are saying WTH is Slipknot?

    Slipwho?

    mcdermott on
  • ShogunShogun Hair long; money long; me and broke wizards we don't get along Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    mcdermott wrote: »
    MyDcmbr wrote: »
    deowolf wrote: »
    Raakam wrote: »
    Gary Coleman, Dennis Hopper... they always come in 3s. Who is next? :(
    RIP

    The guy from Slipknot?

    FAMOUS people.

    98% of people are saying WTH is Slipknot?

    Slipwho?

    Slipwhat? Seriously its like a boating company right?

    Shogun on
  • SliderSlider Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    My grandpa is 84. How do you get prostate cancer, anyway?

    Slider on
  • JarsJars Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    Raakam wrote: »
    Gary Coleman, Dennis Hopper... they always come in 3s. Who is next? :(
    RIP

    god is killin all our stars lately

    Jars on
  • KrathoonKrathoon Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    I kind of think we are reaching a turnover point in Hollywood.

    Krathoon on
  • Kipling217Kipling217 Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    I literaly went "oh maaaan" when I saw this thread. I knew he was on his last legs, but a world without Dennis Hopper is a sadder place. This is the worst news I heard all week.

    Not going to see the likes of him again.

    Legendary Actor (Capital L and A earned the hard way).

    Kipling217 on
    Communicating from the last of the Babylon Stations.
  • KrathoonKrathoon Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    Slider wrote: »
    My grandpa is 84. How do you get prostate cancer, anyway?

    Essentially, the DNA in one of his cells got damaged and started making other damaged cells. The problem is kind of random. It could be age, heredity, diet, or something in his environment.

    Krathoon on
  • VariableVariable Ted Hitler Stroke Me Lady FameRegistered User regular
    edited May 2010
    here's hoping there's some PABST BLUE RIBBON waiting for him

    and that he liked it in real life I guess

    a shame

    Variable on
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  • MyDcmbrMyDcmbr Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    Krathoon wrote: »
    Slider wrote: »
    My grandpa is 84. How do you get prostate cancer, anyway?

    Essentially, the DNA in one of his cells got damaged and started making other damaged cells. The problem is kind of random. It could be age, heredity, diet, or something in his environment.

    This.

    People seem to think that you only get cancer from certain risk factors:

    Skin cancer from the Sun
    Lung cancer from Smoking
    Mouth cancer from chewing tobacco
    Etc etc.

    There are a lot of different types of cancers and not all of them are caused by certain things, sometimes they just happen. Also, people who have never smoked (or inhaled 2nd hand smoke) can still get lung cancer.

    MyDcmbr on
    Steam
    So we get stiff once in a while. So we have a little fun. What’s wrong with that? This is a free country, isn’t it? I can take my panda any place I want to. And if I wanna buy it a drink, that’s my business.
  • Bionic MonkeyBionic Monkey Registered User, ClubPA
    edited May 2010
    Raakam wrote: »
    Gary Coleman, Dennis Hopper... they always come in 3s. Who is next? :(
    RIP

    Hopper is the third. #1 was the guy from Slipknot.

    Bionic Monkey on
    sig_megas_armed.jpg
  • Raiden333Raiden333 Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    I think I might have to dig up my old copy of this and play it in his honor:

    Damn, image broke. Fixing it...
    124889047200.jpg

    Raiden333 on
    steam_sig.png
  • Johnny ChopsockyJohnny Chopsocky Scootaloo! We have to cook! Grillin' HaysenburgersRegistered User regular
    edited May 2010
    No-Quarter wrote: »
    I wanna put up the scene from True Romance with Hopper and Christopher Walken having their demented dialogue about Sicilian Moorish origins. Far too many N-Bombs get dropped though.


    This. So very this. Two great actors bulldozing their way through a great scene.

    Johnny Chopsocky on
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  • ZombiemamboZombiemambo Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    Raakam wrote: »
    Gary Coleman, Dennis Hopper... they always come in 3s. Who is next? :(
    RIP

    Hopper is the third. #1 was the guy from Slipknot.

    Uhm, no, it was Ronnie James Dio.

    Zombiemambo on
    JKKaAGp.png
  • November FifthNovember Fifth Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    I think Dio, Paul Gray, and Peter Steele from Type O Negative form a trio of rockers.

    You could form an actor trio from Fess Parker, Coleman, and Hopper.

    November Fifth on
  • KageraKagera Imitating the worst people. Since 2004Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    Art Linkletter died as well, don't forget Linkletter!

    Kagera on
    My neck, my back, my FUPA and my crack.
  • SynthesisSynthesis Honda Today! Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    Honestly, I think the best way to describe Dennis Hopper is that he stole every scene he was in.

    I used to look forward to that in any movie with him in it, no matter how bad.

    R.I.P. Generalissimo Koopa.

    Synthesis on
    Orca wrote: »
    Synthesis wrote:
    Isn't "Your sarcasm makes me wet," the highest compliment an Abh can pay a human?

    Only if said Abh is a member of the nobility.
  • Witch_Hunter_84Witch_Hunter_84 Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    I'll miss the guy.

    My favorite scene ever

    Witch_Hunter_84 on
    If you can't beat them, arrange to have them beaten in your presence.
  • Handsome CostanzaHandsome Costanza RIP Iwata-san..... ...and thanks for the Switch, you magnificent bastard.Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    What about the movie where he was a space trucker? Awesome movie.

    Handsome Costanza on
    Nintendo Switch friend code: 7305-5583-0420. Add me!
  • LBD_NytetraynLBD_Nytetrayn TorontoRegistered User regular
    edited May 2010
    Jars wrote: »
    Raakam wrote: »
    Gary Coleman, Dennis Hopper... they always come in 3s. Who is next? :(
    RIP

    god is killin all our stars lately

    He seems to do that about this time of year, at least lately. Remember last year?

    Anyway...

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bn1MbU9jOeA

    "I made a picture called Super Mario Bros., and my six-year-old son at the time -- he's now 18 -- he said, 'Dad, I think you're probably a pretty good actor, but why did you play that terrible guy King Koopa in Super Mario Bros.?' and I said, 'Well Henry, I did that so you could have shoes,' and he said, 'Dad, I don't ...need shoes that badly.'" -Dennis Hopper

    I thought he did great with what he was working with, which according to Bob Hoskins was "a fuckin' nightmare. The whole experience was a nightmare. It had a husband-and-wife team directing, whose arrogance had been mistaken for talent. After so many weeks their own agent told them to get off the set! Fuckin' nightmare. Fuckin' idiots."

    That said, I think that instead of shaving Hopper's eyebrows, they should have made them bushier and dyed crimson red, along with the hair on his head. Maybe add some horns. I bet that would have gone a LONG way, even if he looked human otherwise.

    As for the other role I'll always remember him from...

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yaKxRN2LdEI

    LBD_Nytetrayn on
    qjWUWdm.gif1edr1cF.gif0g9jaoG.gifuWt4fLV.gif
  • ElkiElki get busy Moderator, ClubPA mod
    edited May 2010
    Elki on
    smCQ5WE.jpg
  • ShockwaveShockwave Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    Hanging with his buddy James Dean now. Best bad guy ever, RIP.

    Shockwave on
    shockwavesig.jpg
  • ColanutColanut Siedge WealdRegistered User regular
    edited June 2010
    He also collected art and was a friend of many of the luminaries of Modern Art. His collection is amazing if you dig that kind of thing. Also I think he was a resident of Taos, NM for the last many years and was remembered fondly there. I could see him being a Taos kinda guy.

    He was also a visual artist in his own right.

    Just some other info. Also, I'm always surprised by his performances in films from the 50's. I didn't know his work until Blue Velvet on, so that skewed my perception.

    Colanut on
  • nexuscrawlernexuscrawler Registered User regular
    edited June 2010
    Frank Booth remains one of films most disturbing charatcers

    nexuscrawler on
  • tinwhiskerstinwhiskers Registered User regular
    edited June 2010
    No-Quarter wrote: »
    I wanna put up the scene from True Romance with Hopper and Christopher Walken having their demented dialogue about Sicilian Moorish origins. Far too many N-Bombs get dropped though.


    This. So very this. Two great actors bulldozing their way through a great scene.
    NSFW NSFW NSFW NSFW NSFW
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tqccyUpnZwA

    NSFW NSFW NSFW NSFW NSFW
    its not text, so I think its okay to post(as as I understand it the N***** ban is because they don't want the forums showing up as a google hit for that word)

    tinwhiskers on
  • ForarForar #432 Toronto, Ontario, CanadaRegistered User regular
    edited June 2010
    RIP indeed.

    And my respect for him soars again as I read his thoughts on the Mario Brothers movie.

    His son's response is pure gold.

    Forar on
    First they came for the Muslims, and we said NOT TODAY, MOTHERFUCKER!
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