Two-time Oscar winner Gene Hackman is very much alive, despite a confusing headline on the website Grantland
that was misread by many of the actor's fans as he approached his 85th birthday.
According to ABC News
, Grantland posted a story on the iconic actor entitled "The Greatest Living American Actor at 85: Gene Hackman Is Gone But Still in Charge." Some reading the headline believed Hackman had died.
That prompted someone to create a fake Facebook page with "RIP Gene Hackman," claiming that the actor died on Monday – and then it was off to the fake Internet death races once again, according to ABC News.
ET Canada reported
that the Hackman's fake death Facebook page message read: "At about 11 a.m. ET on Monday (January 26, 2015), our beloved actor Gene Hackman passed away. He will be missed but not forgotten. Please show your sympathy and condolences by commenting on and liking this page."
Even fellow actor Dylan McDermott, who co-starred with Hackman and Dustin Hoffman in 2003's "Runaway Jury," got sucked up in the fake death with a "Rest In Peace Gene Hackman … One of our very greats" tweet before learning it was not true and issuing a second tweet.
Grantland in the meantime changed its headline, replacing the word "gone" with "retired." A representative for Hackman told ABC News Wednesday that the star was "alive and well."
ET Canada suggested that the confusion may have also been created by Kevin Costner, when he gave a nod to Hackman and Sean Connery while accepting a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Critics' Choice Movie Awards on Jan. 15.
"I stand here and can't help but think there's been some kind of mistake, like this isn't for me, like I'm really accepting this for Sean Connery or Gene Hackman because they couldn't be here themselves," Costner said in his acceptance speech.
Known for such iconic roles in movies like "Hoosiers" and original "Superman," Hackman won a best actor Oscar in 1981 for "The French Connection" and best supporting actor for "Unforgiven" in 1993.
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