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Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Michael Crichton dies

Author Michael Crichton dies, 66

Best-selling author Michael Crichton has died in Los Angeles aged 66 after a "courageous and private battle against cancer", his family has said.

He penned Jurassic Park, as well as books like Congo and Disclosure, all of which were adapted into films.

His books have sold more than 150 million copies. He also created the long-running US hospital drama ER.

"He will be profoundly missed by those whose lives he touched," his family said in a statement.

A private funeral service is expected.

Crichton is survived by wife Sherri and daughter Taylor.

Odds On (1966)
The Andromeda Strain (1969)
The Great Train Robbery (1975)
Congo (1980)
Jurassic Park (1990)
Disclosure (1994)
The Lost World (1995) - pictured
Timeline (1999)
State of Fear (2004)
Next (2006)

The family's statement paid tribute to a "devoted husband, loving father and generous friend".

It added: "Through his books, Michael Crichton served as an inspiration to students of all ages, challenged scientists in many fields, and illuminated the mysteries of the world in a way we could all understand."

A new Crichton novel had been scheduled to come out in the US next month.

Publisher HarperCollins said the book would now be postponed indefinitely.

A Harvard Medical School graduate, Chicago-born Crichton became the toast of Hollywood when his 1971 novel The Andromeda Strain was turned into a film.

Many of his novels and screenplays were adapted for cinema.

The most successful were Jurassic Park, which burst onto the screen in 1993, and its sequel The Lost World.

ER has won a host of Emmys since it began in 1994, and helped launch the career of George Clooney.

Crichton's 2004 bestseller State of Fear caused controversy when it cast doubt on the dangers of global warming.

Environmentalists said his novel was marring efforts to pass legislation to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.

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