Whether you have watched anything he has made or simply just knows the name J.R Ewing, the world has been sadden today by the dreadful news that Larry Hagman, TV legend, has passed away at the age of 81 after losing to a battle with throat Cancer.
According to MSN.com, his Dallas co-stars Linda Gray (who played his wife Sue Ellen) and Patrick Duffy (who played his younger brother Bobby Ewing) was by his bedside at the Dallas Hospital. Gray’s agent had released a statement in which Gray mentioned that “Larry Hagman was my best friend for 35 years. He was the Pied Piper of life and brought joy to everyone he knew. He was creative, generous, funny, loving and talented and I will miss him enormously. He was an original and lived life to the full”.
Also releasing a statement according to abcnews.com, the Warner Bros. executive producers of Dallas, Cynthia Cidre and Michael M. Robin, along with the cast and crew of Dallas said that “Larry Hagman was a giant, a larger-than-life personality whose iconic performance as J.R. Ewing will endure as one of the most indelible in entertainment history. He truly loved portraying this globally recognized character, and he leaves a legacy of entertainment, generosity and grace. Everyone at Warner Bros. and in the “Dallas” family is deeply saddened by Larry’s passing, and our thoughts are with his family and dear friends during this difficult time.”
Dallas made its debut in 1978 on the American channel CBS, which had an amazing and memorable 13 year run. Dallas was based on the Ewing family who owned the Southfork ranch in Dallas, Texas and centred their lives on being the hot shot oil barons with a tonne of money, well J.R Ewing certainly did. This obviously brought on a lot of drama, scandals, and power hungry individuals that you can imagine.
Dallas can be said to be one of, if not the most iconic TV series of our time, even more than its rival Dynasty. Whether or not you watched the show, everyone knew about one of the most famous episodes/ one of the most famous things to be aired on television, who shot J.R? It was so good, even Eastenders had their own shot at it with who shot Phil Mitchell? It’s even more famous than the Bobby Ewing shower scene (I will not reveal everything in case you haven’t seen it and is interested in watching it… no spoilers here). The unveiling of who shot J.R was watched by an estimated 350 million fans worldwide.
The revival of Dallas 2012 was based on the younger generation of the Ewings including setting up their own scandals and drama on Southfork. Hagman made his return as J.R, as did Bobby, Sue Ellen and some other original faces, although, the fight between J.R and Bobby Ewing was still the main focus.
Hagman was not only known for just the evil oil baron in Dallas, but also for his role in the 1960’s before Dallas as the witty astronaut who releases a Jeannie in I Dream Of Jeannie. 1965 saw the premiere of I Dream of Jeannie were Hagman stepped out as Major Anthony Nelson for a great 5 year run.
Suffering with Cancer before, Hagman was also actively supporting charities such as the National Kidney Foundation, but just last month, Hagman had announced The Larry Hagman Foundation which would fund education programmes that would promote the fine arts and creative learning opportunities for the disadvantaged children of Dallas.
Nominated for two Emmy Awards and four Golden Globes, Larry Hagman was an amazing character, on screen and off. It’s hard to say goodbye to a man who changed the face of television back then and yet is still able to have that effect on the newer, younger generation. Dallas and J.R will always be his final curtain call.