LOS ANGELES, August 17 -- Actor and counterculture hero Peter Fonda has died in Los Angeles at the age of 79.
His family said in a statement that Fonda died Friday morning at his home in Los Angeles. The official cause of death was respiratory failure due to lung cancer. Peter Fonda was the son of Hollywood leading man, Henry Fonda, and brother to actress, Jane Fonda. He earned an Oscar nomination for co-writing the psychedelic road trip movie, 'Easy Rider', which also starred Denis Hopper and Jack Nicholson. He would never win that golden statuette, but would later be nominated for his leading performance as a Vietnam veteran and widowed beekeeper in 'Ulee's Gold'. Fonda had an estranged relationship with his father throughout most of his life, but said that they grew closer over the years before Henry Fonda died in 1982. Fonda collaborated with another struggling young actor, Dennis Hopper, on the script about two weed-smoking, drug-slinging bikers on a trip through the southwest as they make their way to New Orleans for Mardi Gras.
He remained prolific for the rest of his life with notable performances performances as the heel in Steven Soderbergh's 'The Limey', from 1999, and in James Mangold's 2007 update of 3:10 to Yuma. Fonda is survived by his third wife, Margaret DeVogelaere, his daughter, actress Bridget Fonda and son, Justin, both from his first marriage to Susan Brewer. Following her brother's death, Jane Fonda said: "He was my sweet-hearted baby brother. The talker of the family. I have had beautiful alone time with him these last days. He went out laughing."