Burt Reynolds Dead at 82

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Actor Burt Reynolds has died. He was 82 years old. 

A rep for the iconic actor tells ET that Reynolds suffered a heart attack in his home on Thursday, and was transported to Jupiter Medical Center in Florida where he died. Reynolds had his family by his side.

In a statement to ET, Reynolds' niece, Nancy Lee Hess, said his death was a shock to their family.

"My uncle was not just a movie icon; he was a generous, passionate and sensitive man, who was dedicated to his family, friends, fans and acting students," the statement reads. "He has had health issues, however, this was totally unexpected. He was tough. Anyone who breaks their tail bone on a river and finishes the movie is tough. And that’s who he was. My uncle was looking forward to working with Quentin Tarantino, and the amazing cast that was assembled."

"So many people have already contacted me, to tell me how they benefited professionally and personally from my uncle's kindness," the statement continues. "I want to thank all of his amazing fans who have always supported and cheered him on, through all of the hills and valleys of his life and career. My family and I appreciate the outpouring of love for my uncle, and I ask that everyone please respect our family’s privacy at this very difficult time."

Reynolds rose to fame in the ‘70s and had a prolific career. After his breakout film role as Lewis Medlock in 1972's Deliverance, he starred in such classics as 1977's Smokey and the Bandit and 1974's The Longest Yard. He also earned an Oscar nomination for his role as a porn director in 1997's Boogie Nights. He did win a Golden Globe for the role in 1998, and another Golden Globe for Best Actor in a Television Series Musical or Comedy in 1992 for his role in the CBS series Evening Shade. Reynolds -- who played football while he attended Florida State University -- played an ex-professional football player who returns to rural Evening Shade, Arkansas, to coach a losing high-school football team. He also earned an Emmy in 1991 for the memorable role.

He was set to star in the highly anticipated Tarantino film Once Upon a Time in Hollywoodalongside Brad Pitt and Leonardo DiCaprio, which is slated to be released in theaters in 2019.

Reynolds was hospitalized in 2013 after a bout with dehydration and severe flu symptoms. In 2010, he underwent a quintuple heart bypass one year after entering rehab to end a reliance on a prescription drug habit acquired after back surgery.

"I just kept working," Reynolds recounted to ET in 2015 about struggling with addiction and battling rumors that he was dying of AIDS due to his extreme weight loss. "I thought the only way to make these rumors go away is to keep working... it really was an awful period."

In March, the actor made one of his last television appearances on the Today show, where he was asked who he considered the love of his life. Reynolds said it was actress Sally Field. 

"I do miss her. I think she was one of the most underrated actresses, you know?" he also told ET in 2015. "She was the best actress I ever worked with."

Reynolds released his memoir, But Enough About Me in 2015 and spoke candidly with ET about his decades-long life in the spotlight. When it comes to his legacy, the actor said he knows exactly how he wants to be remembered: "He worked hard, he was always on time and knew his lines, and he tried really hard to be a good guy."

Reynolds last spoke to ET in March, when he talked about the biggest high in his career.

"I was number one in the world for five years in a row," he said about his box office run in the '70s. "That was pretty good."

"Well, being here at this time in my life and, you know, I didn’t think it would last this long," he added about his incredible legacy.

Watch below:

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