Stars of Sea and Space

11-Feb-08 9:59 PM by
Filed under Fade to Black; 2 comments.

Sadly, I am again reporting a pair of notable passings.

Roy Scheider, star of such aquatic hits as Jaws and SeaQuest DSV, passed away this Sunday at the age of 75. The news struck me by surprise, as though I had a vague recollection of his being treated for multiple myeloma, when it came to his health, I took the lack of recent news to be good news. Though I'd never seen him in either of the roles he was most famous for, he was nonetheless instantly identifiable in any other work to which he applied himself. I saw him last year in Marathon Man and Blue Thunder, and I regret that these weren't bigger and better roles, respectively. I'll rectify that soon — better late than never.

The second passing has not been so well marked, though artist John Alvin, a native of my own state, did not long remain bound by that terrestrial origin. His many Star Wars posters over the last decade have captured the wonder and legacy of this awesome galactic series, with his portfolio including the posters of other significant and eclectic works: The Lion King, Blazing Saddles, E.T., Blade Runner, and The Lord of the Rings, among others. One rarely considers the talent behind these posters — but observe how beautiful and memorable these paintings are and how rare and collectible they become, and it's a wonder names like John Alvin aren't better associated with such art. He passed away from a heart attack last Wednesday at age 59.

Thank you, sirs, for your creativity and craftmanship: you took us to new heights and depths and piqued our imaginations in the process. You are fondly remembered.

2 Responses to “Stars of Sea and Space”

  1. GeneD adds:

    Jaws is a classic. While the special effects and pacing are dated, the overall suspense and acting are solid and show why Spielberg et al. became such big stars.

    SeaQuest DSV started out as a promising Star Trek analogue under sea rather than in space, but later seasons suffered with the choice of younger and younger cast members and less and less realistic plots, ranging from postapocalyptic to time travel fantasy.

    I didn't know about the death of movie-poster artist John Alvin, several of whose posters I've owned.

  2. Ken Gagne adds: posted a nice tribute to John Alvin yesterday. (Hat tip to