The actor was famous for 'Live and Let Die', 'Licence to Kill', and Irwin Allen's television series 'Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea'.
We have learned that the original Fly star is no more. David Hedison, the actor who played iconic roles in over a hundred movies and TV shows died on July 18, in Los Angeles, as reported by Deadline.
He was 92-years-old and passed away peacefully in his sleep. He was surrounded by his family and friends in his last moments and was deeply loved. David Hedison's family issued a statement announcing and mourning his death.
“Even in our deep sadness, we are comforted by the memory of our wonderful father. He loved us all dearly and expressed that love every day. He was adored by so many, all of whom benefitted from his warm and generous heart. Our dad brought joy and humor wherever he went and did so with great style," his two daughters Alexandra and Serena revealed, adding that he “passed away peacefully."
Born in 1927, Hedison decided to be an actor when he saw Tyrone Power in the film Blood and Sand. After serving in the Navy for 18 months, the man moved to the theatre and began his acting career. He was naturally brilliant, a true born actor, and was awarded the Barter Theatre Award for the most promising young actor. David only moved forward from thereon.
In 1957, he signed a contract with 20th Fox and starred in multiple movies which are now known as cult classics. Some of the best works David Hedison was known for include the original Fly (1958), The Enemy Below, License to Kill, Live and Let Die, The Son of Robinhood, and of course, Irwin Allen's iconic television series Voyage to the Botton of the Sea.
David was the first actor to play Felix Leiter aka James Bond's ally in two films. "There was much more to do in the film than in the past, and they were afraid of using an unknown or someone they were not quite sure of. I think in this kind of film, it won't lead to other work unless you do something stand-out with a really wonderfully written scene. Otherwise you're just doing a job, part of the ensemble. And in this case, I have lots of action scenes, but no one scene that is memorable ... Felix is a fairly one-dimensional character, you never get into any depth. You do what you can. There's not much to play. All you can do is perform it with a simple reality ... It was running around, bang bang, getting wet, screaming and yelling, and all kinds of fun, but not serious acting," Hedison said about appearing in Bond movies with the same character twice.
The industry is deeply mourning the loss and people are pouring in their last respects for the actor. "One of Roger’s oldest and closest friends was David Hedison, who we have learned passed away a few days ago. David phoned Roger regularly throughout his final illness in 2017 and was a great support. Our thoughts and love go out to Serena and Alexandra at this hugely sad time," tweeted Sir Roger Moore's legacy.
"RIP David Hedison. Fond memories of the utterly crazy 'Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea' and his immaculate Felix Leiters. I met him once in LA and saw Robert Davi that same evening. A day of 00 heaven," added Mark Gratis.
We are very sorry to learn that David Hedison has passed away. David played Felix Leiter in LIVE AND LET DIE (1973) opposite Sir Roger Moore, he returned to the role in 1989 with Timothy Dalton as James Bond, in LICENCE TO KILL. Our thoughts are with his family and friends. pic.twitter.com/G9cyRCvQNM— James Bond (@007) July 22, 2019
David married Bridget in 1968 and they were happy together until she passed away in 2016 due to breast cancer. The actor is now survived by his two daughters - Serena Hedison, an editor and producer, and Alexandra Hedison, an actress and director.
Alexandra dated celebrity icon Ellen DeGeneres and is currently married to Hollywood legend Jodie Foster. Our deep condolences to the grieving family, friends, and fans.
Sad to hear David Hedison died on 18th July age 92. He twice played felix Leiter in Licence to Kill and Live & Let Die also appearing with Roger Moore in The Saint,North Sea Hijack and The Naked Face.Starred in the movie The Fly and popular series Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea. pic.twitter.com/LDwDdkJpgR— PETER OXLEY (@oxley264) July 22, 2019