Actor Burt Reynolds Dies at 82

posted by Alan McBride - 

Actor and director Burt Reynolds is dead.

Reynolds, a resident of south Florida, died Thursday at Jupiter Medical Center after suffering a heart attack, according to a statement from his manager.

He had reportedly dealt with heart problems for a number of years, including issues that required major surgery in 2010, according to published reports. 

The actor, long believed in some pop culture circles to have been a Georgia native, was actually born in Lansing, Michigan.

His family moved to Riviera Beach in Florida when he was five years old.

Reynolds, in his biography, joked that he should get the blame for any confusion, since he had described himself as someone who "grew up a southern boy who didn't want to be a Yankee."

Acting, however, was not the first career for which Reynolds became famous. 

He got his start in football.

Reynolds studied at Florida State University and had a promising career in football before an injury put a halt to it.

His career in front of the camera, and behind it, got started in TV in the 1950s.

In the 1970s, he became one of the top movie actors in Hollywood.

Though his break-out role in "Deliverance" got him critical notice, films such as "Smokey and the Bandit" seemed to be the ones he enjoyed the most.

Late career roles in the movie "Boogie Nights" and the TV series "Evening Shade" also brought him critical acclaim and awards for his work.

Reynolds, however, admitted that his career was one with just as many valleys as peaks, once joking that he was the only actor ever to get fired by all three major networks.

He also admitted that he had some regrets, in many cases choosing the parts that were "more fun to do" over those that were more challenging. 

He was reportedly among the choices to play Michael Corleone in "The Godfather."

There were also reports that Reynolds was nearly cast as Han Solo in the first of the Star Wars motion pictures.

In the late years of his career, Reynolds made numerous appearances in TV shows, including the animated spy comedy "Archer," where he played a good-natured send-up of himself.

Reynolds also taught acting classes, noting that he had spent 60 years in the business and hoped he had something he could give.

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