Michael Crichton Passes Away (1942-2008)

The best-selling author, screenwriter, and director died Tuesday.

by | November 5, 2008 | Comments

Randall Michelson/WireImage.com

Best-selling author, screenwriter, and director Michael Crichton has passed away at the age of 66. The medical doctor-turned-filmmaker was best known for writing techno-thrillers (The Andromeda Strain, Westworld, Jurassic Park) and for creating the award-winning medical drama ER, now in its 15th and final season.

According to reports, Crichton died suddenly Tuesday in Los Angeles after a private battle with cancer. In a message posted to his official website, representatives of Crichton’s family released a statement, excerpted below:

“While the world knew him as a great story teller that challenged our preconceived notions about the world around us — and entertained us all while doing so — his wife Sherri, daughter Taylor, family and friends knew Michael Crichton as a devoted husband, loving father and generous friend who inspired each of us to strive to see the wonders of our world through new eyes. He did this with a wry sense of humor that those who were privileged to know him personally will never forget.”

Perhaps best known for writing best-selling science fiction novels like The Andromeda Strain, Congo, Sphere, Rising Sun, Jurassic Park and its sequel, The Lost World (all of which were adapted into big-budget blockbusters), Crichton also wrote original screenplays and directed his own films. His 1973 science fiction-western Westworld (90 percent on the Tomatometer), directed from his own script, remains Crichton’s best-reviewed film to date. His next two directorial efforts, 1978’s Coma (76 percent, adapted and directed from a novel by Robin Cook) and 1979’s The Great Train Robbery (78 percent, adapted and directed from his own novel), also rank among the best films written by Crichton or adapted from any of his works, ranking above films directed by the likes of Oscar-winner Robert Wise (The Andromeda Strain), Barry Levinson (Sphere), Frank Marshall (Congo), Philip Kaufman (Rising Sun), Jan de Bont (Twister), and John McTiernan (The 13th Warrior, based on his novel Eaters of the Dead).

At the time of his death, two new projects based on Crichton’s works were rumored to be in development: Jurassic Park IV and Westworld, a remake to be scripted by Billy Ray (Volcano, Flightplan).

Head over to Michael Crichton’s Tomatometer page for a detailed filmography and more.

Tag Cloud

Esquire Hulu cats Apple TV+ TNT Action transformers cops Year in Review Syfy talk show cars game of thrones book Academy Awards BBC TCA Winter 2020 slashers ITV psychological thriller unscripted Cartoon Network WarnerMedia PaleyFest Superheroe discovery LGBTQ supernatural Nickelodeon Turner medical drama Chernobyl Lifetime CMT Kids & Family Classic Film cancelled Character Guide Film Festival FXX Marvel Studios screenings name the review Christmas OWN christmas movies Trivia series travel technology Baby Yoda comiccon DirecTV DC streaming service ABC Family mutant Musical Lionsgate First Reviews elevated horror television Food Network sequel Acorn TV Binge Guide teaser DGA spy thriller aliens zero dark thirty Columbia Pictures Star Wars Awards Pop Spring TV San Diego Comic-Con Biopics versus NYCC USA Opinion Pride Month revenge Super Bowl Interview cinemax Red Carpet Rocky Mystery Nominations Turner Classic Movies Holidays HBO Trailer Stephen King Reality Marvel El Rey award winner disaster Emmys Musicals Country Endgame renewed TV shows SDCC Spike Superheroes harry potter Ghostbusters NBC kids See It Skip It Crackle breaking bad TCA Mindy Kaling APB Paramount Hallmark space Amazon Polls and Games Comic Book hispanic Toys Television Academy ESPN streaming theme song Emmy Nominations Tarantino BBC America TruTV children's TV toy story Sundance Lifetime Christmas movies Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt The Walking Dead Fantasy Epix Mary Poppins Returns History The Purge SXSW Shudder sag awards Apple TV Plus Discovery Channel vampires Peacock based on movie YA spinoff HBO Max latino Sundance Now Rom-Com Awards Tour movies comics Calendar GLAAD Trophy Talk Women's History Month dramedy President what to watch crime Ovation Warner Bros. A&E stand-up comedy zombies Netflix spider-man canceled Comedy Central cooking witnail Set visit Dark Horse Comics cults psycho dc quibi Nat Geo First Look blaxploitation Summer Infographic YouTube Red composers Disney+ Disney Plus Horror ghosts DC Universe GIFs werewolf Mudbound cancelled TV series Watching Series USA Network screen actors guild finale rotten movies we love canceled TV shows 2020 Certified Fresh reboot The Arrangement Avengers natural history crossover singing competition doctor who video Reality Competition X-Men casting Song of Ice and Fire TV renewals Lucasfilm docudrama crime thriller Pirates comic CBS All Access National Geographic TLC cancelled television Family Hallmark Christmas movies Grammys Tubi Disney Plus binge serial killer LGBT MTV New York Comic Con DC Comics Universal sitcom Apple Creative Arts Emmys Thanksgiving AMC VICE TCA 2017 YouTube Premium Pixar BET Holiday jamie lee curtis Captain marvel directors Martial Arts dragons Election sports politics SundanceTV diversity E! Amazon Prime Video American Society of Cinematographers 007 Freeform spain foreign 24 frames Writers Guild of America Cosplay halloween blockbuster Britbox Mary poppins 2015 spanish language ABC thriller Rock green book IFC Walt Disney Pictures E3 Oscars Pet Sematary Sneak Peek Brie Larson adaptation dceu 2019 facebook Fall TV richard e. Grant Cannes independent Comedy Best and Worst MSNBC south america Extras adventure Heroines game show TCM justice league zombie Western A24 CBS nature Premiere Dates PBS Sundance TV Drama Fox News animated Bravo Teen anthology Netflix Christmas movies anime TBS golden globes Amazon Prime true crime Box Office Tumblr romantic comedy historical drama Valentine's Day mockumentary joker Showtime FOX hist Disney Channel 2016 festivals TIFF Black Mirror Film GoT Masterpiece Logo war Podcast Shondaland Countdown miniseries Spectrum Originals political drama TV Land Sony Pictures period drama Photos Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Vudu Starz Paramount Network biography Marathons 2017 Mary Tyler Moore batman social media 20th Century Fox Disney WGN The CW TV romance YouTube Quiz crime drama Winter TV Comics on TV 2018 Animation robots Schedule 45 Tomatazos Crunchyroll Ellie Kemper boxoffice OneApp Marvel Television Rocketman cartoon strong female leads ratings Arrowverse Music Star Trek CNN IFC Films RT History Sci-Fi free movies police drama MCU The Witch Elton John indie RT21 Winners Anna Paquin Disney streaming service VH1 CW Seed 21st Century Fox science fiction Adult Swim FX tv talk 71st Emmy Awards cancelled TV shows Video Games