2017 – In Memoriam

We’re here, at the end of another year. 2016 was reportedly ‘one of the worst years ever’ – by December’s end, everyone was depressed by all the Trump, by all the Brexit, by all the everything. It was a year where people from many generations felt their childhoods slip away for ever, felt pieces of themselves die as successful heroes passed out of life and into whatever comes next. 2017 has been no joke either, with more Trump, more Brexit, and more everything seemingly tightening the noose. The Grim Reaper’s scythe has once again swung with abandon, claiming many of the lives who have had a wide spreadh impact on various aspects of culture. Make no mistake – War, Disease, Famine have all claimed the usual millions of souls as they are wont to do, and those are battles we should be working together to overcome, but that is not the purpose of this post.

I haven’t been paying much attention to my Shrine posts recently, so I decided to do a yearly wrap up instead of the deaths which affected me in some way, on a personal level. Naturally that means that we’ll mostly be covering famous people here. I don’t mean this to sound as if I’m putting the famous on a pedestal, as if their lives mean more than some random mother or son who may have died this year – I firmly believe that every life is as valuable as the next. Yet here I am. In the end it comes down to who I ‘know’ or recognise.

Don’t be annoyed or disheartened if some celebrity who meant a lot to you and who died this year isn’t on the list – as I said, these are the people who meant something to me. By all means, add those who meant something to you in the comments. In the end, this is merely a place for you to give a few words, thoughts, thanks, or memories for those who have fallen.

William Peter Blatty – 7th January 1928 – 13th January 2017

Thanks for giving me, and countless others, many nights of unsettled sleep with The Exorcist.

Miguel Ferrer – February 7, 1955 – January 19, 2017

Thank you for being a perminent fixture in some of my most watched and loved entertainment of all time. You may be the only actor who has starred in both one of my favourite movies ever (Robocop), one of my favourite mini-series ever (The Stand), and one of my favourite TV shows ever (Twin Peaks). 

John Hurt – 22 January 1940 – 25 January 2017

Thank you for your willingness to ignore and balk at traditional acting conventions by appearing in cult works, low budget films, and Television, along with the more accepted critical fodder – for Alien, for Spaceballs, for The Elephant Man, for Hellboy, and many more.

Richard Hatch – May 21, 1945 – February 7, 2017

Thanks for being the original Apollo in Battlestar Gallactica – I’m not as familiar with your other work, but for that I’ll always remember you.

Bill Paxton – May 17, 1955 – February 25, 2017

Thanks for being a true movie legend and for appearing in many of my personal favourite films – The Terminator, Aliens, Near Dark, Commando, Tombstone, True Lies, Frailty, and bringing a truly unique energy and life to them.

Chuck Berry – October 18, 1926 – March 18, 2017

One of the forefathers or modern blues, rock, and by extension, metal, thanks for bringing many decades of wonderful music to the world.

Clifton James – May 29, 1920 – April 15, 2017

Thanks for bringing me many laughs in my younger days, especially in the Bond movies, and also for sterling work in a few of my other favourites.

Jonathan Demme – February 22, 1944 – April 26, 2017

One of the few filmmakers to make a critically respected and award winning horror movie in The Silence Of The Lambs, thanks for breaking those boundaries.

Michael Parks – April 24, 1940 – May 9, 2017

Even though he had been acting regularly since the late 50s, Parks became better known in later decades thanks to his work with Kevin Smith and Quentin Tarantino – thanks for many terrific performances in many terrific films.

Powers Boothe – June 1, 1948 – May 14, 2017

A character actor with great action pedigree, thanks for appearing in some of my favourites such as Tombstone, Extreme Prejudice, Sin City.

Chris Cornell – July 20, 1964 – May 18, 2017

Although Soundgarden were my fourth favourite out of Nirvana, Alice In Chains, Pearl Jam and Soundgarden, Cornell was nevertheless a driving force in rock and grunge with unmistakable vocals which have been a part of my life for almost as long as I can remember.

Nicky Hayden – July 30, 1981 – May 22, 2017

My dad rides motorbikes. My brother rides a motorbike. Many of my uncles and cousins are bikers. I have dabbled. I live on the same street as the family of my countries most famous motorcyclists and our kids are friends. We all watch motorcycling – none of that F1 shite. Any time any biker dies it’s a tragedy, and Nicky was a particularly heavy loss.

Sir Roger George Moore, KBE (14 October 1927 – 23 May 2017)

I was a Bond fan before I really understood what films were, and Moore was my era. It is typically the Moore films I return to most for their lighter approach and tendency towards action and humour. Moore will always be Bond for me, and while he didn’t have the most varied career outside of that role, he still popped up in many other films and shows and was renowned for being a decent human being.

Adam West (September 19, 1928 – June 9, 2017)

The original Batman… well I’ve heard varying reports on what he was like in real life, but I’m mainly here to focus on their work and what it meant to me – I was never a huge fan of the original campy series, but I still watched it every now and then when I was young. Thanks for being a mainstay on TV and for your great voice work on many shows.

John G Avildson – (December 21, 1935 – June 16, 2017)

Thanks for making some of my favourite films in the Rocky and Karate Kid series as well as a few other notable movies.

Martin Landau – (June 20, 1928 – July 15, 2017)

Thanks for appearing in some of my favourite movies and shows ever, from North By Northwest and The Twilight Zone to Ed Wood and The X Files, and of course for bringing your daughter Juliet into the world.

George A Romero – February 4, 1940 – July 16, 2017

There have been fewer bigger influences on my love of horror, and on the wider horror world than George A Romero, the man who essentially invented the modern zombie genre – thanks for that, thanks for your movies, and thanks for never compromising for The Man.

Sean Hughes – 10 November 1965 – 16 October 2017

Sean, aside from Coronation Street I don’t think I ever saw any of your non- Buzzcocks work. I’m not a huge stand-up comedy fan, but you always made me laugh on Buzzcocks. 

Feel free to leave your thoughts and memories of any people we lost in 2017 in the comments below.

Walk Of Fame Inductees – February 2015

To check the dubious reasoning behind these posts, check the original here:


In this new series of posts I’ll be selecting a Star at random from every decade (who was born in that decade) starting from the 1880s up until the 1990s to be interred in this land of magic and wonder, who will for ever more see their name set in stone far beyond the places where Gods dare to tread. Each name will have a unique star placed and statue built-in their honour. Often accompanying these additions will be news of a new store or museum to go alongside those stars whose work is of particular genius, and you too can visit and see the place of your dreams, simply by closing your eyes….

1880s: FW.Murnau: For contributions to Film. Murnau is the most famous of all the German Expressionists and a director whose European films were popular enough that he moved to Hollywood and continued success. Although many of his films are not lost, what remains are regarded as classics, including Nosferatu, Faust, and A Song Of Two Humans.


1890s: Mae West: For contributions to Film, Theatre, and Music. Mae West was one of the most versatile and controversial stars of early Hollywood, a popular name on the Vaudeville circuit before she began making movies. After being a major draw in the 1930s she continued on Radio and Broadway, giving risque performances filled with innuendo – once a new generation of filmmakers emerged in the 60s and 70s she became an icon again for her liberal views. Her works include I’m No Angel, Klondike Annie, and Belle Of The Nineties.

Mae West

1900s: David Lean: For contributions to Film. Known primarily for his epics late in his career, Lean started out as an editor and eventually began directing a string of renowned British films before moving to Hollywood. Earning a Knighthood and two Oscar wins for Best Director, Lean is unquestionably one of Britain’s most successful directors whose influence remains today thanks to works including Lawrence Of Arabia, Doctor Zhivago, and Brief Encounter. 


1910s: Frank Sinatra: For contributions to Film and Music. Although I can’t stand the man’s music, Sinatra also carved out possibly the most impressive filmography of any singer turned actor with works including From Here To Eternity, Ocean’s Eleven, and The Manchurian Candidate.

Portrait Of Frank Sinatra

1920s: Blake Edwards: For contributions to Film, Theatre, and Television. Beginning his career as an actor before turning to writing and directing, most of his films were lighthearted fare but became immensely successful and his TV credits span five decades. He is remembered for works including The Pink Panther Series, Breakfast At Tiffany’s and Days Of Wine And Roses. 


1930s: Warren Beatty: For contributions to Film. One of the most successful stars of New Hollywood, Beatty has been nominated for 14 Oscars as actor, Director, Writer, and Producer and has had a string of enviable hits since the early 1960s. With charismatic performances in iconic films, Beatty is sure to be remembered as one of the most important figures of Cinema in the 20th Century thank to works such as Bonnie And Clyde, Reds, and Heaven Can Wait. 


1940s: Linda Hunt: For contributions to Film, Television, and Theatre. Successful as an actress in whatever field she has tried, it wasn’t until she was 35 that she became famous, leading to a long (Oscar Winning) career where her voice, stature, and performances have all combined to create memorable characters. She is known for works including Kindergarten Cop, The Year Of Living Dangerously, and NCIS. 


1950s: Miguel Ferrer: For contributions to Film and Television. Coming from Hollywood royalty, Ferrer nevertheless carved his own path starting out in one-time roles on 80s TV shows before greater success in movies. Ferrer continues to move between TV and movies and is known for works such as Robocop, Twin Peaks, and The Stand.


1960s: Michel Gondry: For contributions to Film, Television, and Music. Starting out as a musician and directing music videos for his band, Gondry began to film for other bands and make his own short films and commercials, gaining recognition for a unique visual style and snappy storytelling – it wasn’t until the turn of the century that he began making movies and picked up an Academy Award. He is known for works such as Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind, The Science Of Sleep, and The Green Hornet. 


1970s: Gina Lee Nolan: For Contributions to Television. A career in modelling led Nolin to the small screen as one of the models on the US version of The Price Is Right. This exposure led Nolin to wider success as an actress, TV host, and blogger in works sich as Sheena and Baywatch. 

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1980s: Emilie De Ravin: For contributions to Film and Television. Starting out with a promising dance and ballet background, Ravin landed a number of high profile roles in successful Television shows and has continued to act in both indie and mainstream movies. She is known for works including Lost, The Hills Have Eyes, and Once Upon A Time. 


1990s:  Rachel Hurd Wood: For contributions to Film. Alongside a career in modelling, Wood is known for successfully transitioning between child and adult acting thanks to performances in works including Peter Pan, An American Haunting, and Tomorrow When The War Began.


In addition to the Stars and Statues erected in honour of the people above, the following attractions have also been created:

In honour of Miguel Ferrer’s induction: the crime ridden New Detroit attraction has been created. This interactive real world video game sees the New Detroit of the Robocop series being built, with you entering the world as any type of person you wish to be. Spend a few nights or a few weeks in this world as you fight crime as a cop, or a Robocop or become a criminal and get all of those law-breaking murderous urges out of your system.

In honour of Emilie De Ravin’s induction: the Lost Experience has been created. Based on the hit TV show, you can explore full scale replicas of the Islands featured on the show. Decide how you arrive on the island – by boat, by helicopter, or for the fearless, by a virtual plane crash. While on the Island you can team up with others to gather supplies and camp together, spending lazy days on the beach in the sun, or the more adventurous can venture inland in search of the Island’s many mysteries – beware of the Smoke Monster.

What attractions can you dream up in honour of any of the inductees above? Let us know in the comments!