Sci-fi Legend Ray Bradbury Dead at 91

by 8:31 AM PDT, June 06, 2012
Photo: Getty Images

Ray Bradbury -- the science fiction-fantasy writer behind films such as Fahrenheit 451, Moby Dick and TV shows The Twilight Zone and The Ray Bradbury Theater -- died Tuesday night. He was 91.

Bradbury's daughter Alexandra confirmed her father's death on Wednesday, but did not provide additional details. Although the sci-fi master had to slow down in recent years due to a stroke and used a wheelchair, Bradbury remained active into his 90s, turning out new novels, plays, screenplays and a volume of poetry. He was said to have written every day in the basement office of his home in the Cheviot Hills neighborhood of Los Angeles

In addition to his explosive novel Fahrenheit 451 -- about a future American society in which books are outlawed -- Bradbury also scripted John Huston's 1956 film version of Moby Dick and wrote for The Twilight Zone and other television programs, including The Ray Bradbury Theater, which adapted dozens of his works.

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Bradbury's first breakthrough was his 1950 work The Martian Chronicles, a series of intertwined stories that satirized capitalism, racism and superpower tensions as it portrayed Earth colonizers destroying an idyllic Martian civilization.

He was credited as a writer on the animated film Icarus Montgolfier Wright, which was nominated for an Academy Award, and he received an Emmy for his teleplay of The Halloween Tree. His fame even extended to the moon, where Apollo astronauts named a crater "Dandelion" in honor of Dandelion Wine, his beloved coming-of-age novel. In addition, an asteroid was named 9766 Bradbury.

Born Ray Douglas Bradbury on Aug. 22, 1920, in Waukegan, Ill., the author once described himself as "that special freak, the man with the child inside who remembers all." He is survived by his four daughters. Marguerite Bradbury, his wife of 56 years, died in 2003

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