Veteran actor Dennis Hopper dies aged 74

Hollywood veteran Dennis Hopper has died aged 74, following a long battle with prostate cancer.

According to reports the iconic actor passed away on Saturday morning at his home in Venice, California, surrounded by family and friends.

Hopper was best known for roles in a string of cult classics, and began his career in theatre, with his early film appearances including the two James Dean classics Rebel Without A Cause and Giant.

His film career really took off however with the 1969 road movie Easy Rider, which he co-wrote, directed and starred in alongside Peter Fonda. The pair were both nominated for an Oscar for Best Screenplay for the movie.

However Hopper gained a reputation in the 70s for a hell-raiser with a penchant for drink and drugs – as well as gaining notoriety for a short-lived marriage to 70s singer Michelle Phillips – which sent his career on a downward spiral.

He later recovered and went on to make memorable appearances in the likes of Apocalypse Now, Blue Velvet and the action blockbuster Speed.

He also made his mark on the small screen, appearing in such shows as 24 and the TV version of the Oscar winning film Crash, which was one of his final roles.

Hopper revealed in 2009 he was terminally ill with prostate cancer and was last seen in public in March when he was honoured with a star on Hollywood’s Walk Of Fame.

He was married five times and leaves four children, although his final months were blighted by a messy divorce from his last wife Victoria Duffy.

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