Is it possible to leave behind a legacy more pleasing than Bill Paxton’s?
He popped up in Stripes, Terminator and Commando, before what his fans saw as his breakout role as Hudson in Aliens, and he followed that up with a kickass role in the cult fave Near Dark.
He paid his dues as a character actor in a bunch of forgotten thrillers and action flicks (Trespass being a good one) before a one-two punch of memorable roles in Tombstone and True Lies, and finally got mainstream exposure with Apollo 13, Twister, and Titanic.
After that he kept on working, appearing in over two dozen more movies, one of them being Frailty, a dark masterpiece he starred in and directed.
With all this he still found time to play Bill Hendrickson for 5 seasons in Big Love on HBO, and wasn’t beyond appearing in TV movies or shows like Agents of Shield. And he worked right to the end, having just completed the first season of Training Day on CBS.
Everyone liked him, no one had a bad word to say about him, and it was always such a joy to see him onscreen, whether he was playing a good guy, or a bad guy, and he played some really nasty bad guys.
He was the quintessential character actor, and the kind of actor writers love. Leading men and woman come and go, but it’s the character actors that we can all relate to, and it’s why so many people who never met Bill Paxton feel like they lost a friend today.