Category Archives: Obituary

Douglas Trumbull, VFX Pioneer has passed away

While Douglas Trumbull might not be a household name, his work certainly was pioneering. He supervised the VFX on classic films like 2001: A Space Odyssey, Close Encounters, Star Trek: The Motion Picture, and Blade Runner. He even directed one of my personal favorites, Silent Running.

Arguably, he’s the man who invented “Starship Porn”.

He passed away at the age of 79 after fighting cancer, a brain tumor, and a stroke.

Anne Rice, Requiescat in Pace

Anne Rice, the writer who birthed or at least midwifed the late-twentieth-century vampire mania, has died at the age of 80 (December 11), surrounded by her family. She will be interred in a family mausoleum in New Orleans. A more public celebration of her life will take place at some future date.

She first gained fame with Interview with the Vampire (1976), a modern reconsideration of the undead mythos, and went on to pen multiple works in gothic, fantastic, erotic, and religious genres (mostly as Anne Rice, but she also penned a few as Anne Rampling and A.N. Roquelaure). Her works have been widely adapted in other media including movies and graphic novels. The rights for future adaptations were purchased by AMC.

Anne Rice will be missed by family, friends, and her legions of fans.

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Rest in Peace: Petra Mayer

Petra Mayer, NPR book editor and reviewer and long-time promoter of SF, fantasy, and comics, has died suddenly on November 13 as the result of a (probable) pulmonary embolism. She was 46.

In addition to her help promoting SF and Fantasy to a broader audience, she also worked for two years as an audio editor for Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, and she made a number of appearances at SF conventions.

Requiescat in pace.

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Richard Donner dead at 91

Director Richard Donner has died. He was 91 years old.

Most people here will know Donner for directing Superman (1978), the film that proved a big-budget superhero movie could reach the adults as well as the kids, and for his involvement with the Lethal Weapon franchise. His long history behind the camera also includes The Goonies and episodes of several genre series, including The Six Million Dollar Man, The Man from U.N.C.L.E., and The Twilight Zone— most notably “Nightmare at 20,000 Feet.”

In the late sixties, he introduced a generation of kids to the style of the old movie serials with Danger Island. Made for The Banana Splits, it ran in installments during the first season and was rerun in its entirety during subsequent seasons.

Rest in Peace.

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David Anthony Kraft, R.I.P.

David Anthony Kraft, comic-book writer, rock journalist, SF/fantasy publisher, and creator of Comics Interview, has died after a prolonged battle with COVID-related pneumonia. He was 68 years old.

Kraft wrote for several companies, and many remember him best as one of the writers who introduced social issues into his comic-book stories. He had particularly memorable runs on The Defenders and She-Hulk.

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Kentaro Miura Passes Away At The Age of 54

Hakusensha’s editorial department and the writer’s official Twitter account have reported that Kentaro Miura, the writer and artist of the manga Berserk, has passed away at the age of 54 of an acute aortic dissection.

Berserk, which started in 1988 and was still ongoing as of Miura’s death has been adapted into several anime series, one in 1997 adapting the Golden Age Arc (which was followed by a trilogy of films adapting that arc), and a later series in the late 2010s picking up where the Golden Age Arc left off (which has run for 3 seasons).

Miura’s work had been credited as influencing various works, from video games like Dragon’s Dogma, Dark Souls, and Monster Hunter and the design of Cloud Strife’s Buster Swordin Final Fantasy VII, to various other anime and manga series like Demon Slayer and Vagabond, as well as the Netflix Castlevania animated series.

RIP Ben Bova

The Science Fiction author passed away on November 29 at age 88 of complications from COVID-19. He authored over 120 works of sci-fi, won six Hugo Awards, and has been the president of both the National Space Society as well as the Science Fiction Writers of America.