Hollywood legend Burt Reynolds dead at 82

21st September 1972 Film star Burt Reynolds in relaxed mood

Burt Reynolds, the film icon who starred in popular films including Smokey and the Bandit and The Longest Yard has died at age 82 in Florida, his manager told The Hollywood Reporter.

Reynolds died Thursday morning at a Florida hospital following a heart attack. In 2010, he underwent a quintuple heart bypass one year after entering rehab to end a reliance on a prescription drug habit acquired after back surgery.

Well known for his many romances, Reynolds' tempestuous relationship with his ex-wife Loni Anderson was key tabloid fodder in the 1980s and the divorce left him millions in debt just when his film career faltered.

Reynolds released his memoir, But Enough About Me in 2015 and spoke candidly with ET about his decades-long life in the spotlight.

Burton Leon Reynolds Jnr was born on February 11, 1936, and grew up in Florida. Reynolds also generated attention for financial woes and his struggles with prescription pain medication.

In the 1990s and 2000s, Burt Reynolds mostly hit a drought, but he found great success playing a porn director and mogul in Boogie Nights, a performance that won him a Golden Globe win and an Oscar nomination, losing the latter award to Robin Williams for his turn in Good Will Hunting.

Reynolds had visited New Zealand to make the 2004 film Without a Paddle, alongside Seth Green.


An iconic Hollywood sex symbol in front of the camera, Reynolds also tried his directorial hand behind it, and later earned a reputation for philanthropy after founding the Burt Reynolds Institute for Film & Theatre in his home state of Florida.

When injuries derailed his promising athletic career, Reynolds turned to acting. Burt made his Broadway debut in Look, We've Come Through, toured with the production, and began taking acting classes once he returned to NY. "I didn't take the part that would be the most challenging", Reynolds said in an interview with CNN.

Reynolds was known for starring in a mixture of action films and romantic comedies, including Starting Over, The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, Best Friends, and The Man Who Loved Women.

Actor Wesley Snipes referenced a line from Smokey And The Bandit in his tribute to Reynolds.

His first big movie breakout role was as Lewis Medlock in box office hit Deliverance in 1972.

He would later call Field "the one that got away". I know I'm old, but I feel young.

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