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Actor Harry Dean Stanton Passes

September 19, 2017 GMT

Harry Dean Stanton was a lot of things – a child of the Depression, a WWII vet, a beatnik, a bit player in TV and movies, a troubadour, a hipster icon.

Most of all, though, people referred to him as “a character actor,” a term that he always hated and considered reductive at best and an insult at worst. I enjoyed him in Alien and Fire Down Below.

Harry went go on to appear TV shows including Rawhide, Gunsmoke and Bonanza. He also made his mark on the big screen, landing roles in classic films including Cool Hand Luke, The Godfather Part II, Escape from New York and Alien.

However, the role that’s been lauded as his big breakthrough came in 1984 when he played amnesiac Travis Henderson in Paris, Texas -- the same year he starred in the cult classic Repo Man. Those two films, he told Vulture in 2013, were his favorites.