David Bowie, a legendary entertainer, singer, songwriter, occasional actor and pop culture icon, died early Monday morning, it was announced on his official facebook page. He had been fighting cancer, which had largely been kept out of the public eye.
"January 10 2016 - David Bowie died peacefully today surrounded by his family after a courageous 18 month battle with cancer. While many of you will share in this loss, we ask that you respect the family’s privacy during their time of grief," the statement reads. An outpouring of hundreds of thousands of fans has been added to the post since it was released around 1:30am EST.
Bowie has both a direct and indirect legacy on all of pop culture - including multiple angles on genre entertainment. While he famously starred in 1986's Labyrinth as Jareth the Goblin King, singing (and let's be honest - hip-thrusting) his way into generations of impressionable minds, his genre legacy goes much further. In a direct way, many may not realize that Duncan Jones, the writer/director who came onto the sci-fi scene with Moon, is Bowie's son. Jones also directed 2016's upcoming Warcraft.
He posted an image on twitter with a brief, heartfelt message.
Very sorry and sad to say it's true. I'll be offline for a while. Love to all. pic.twitter.com/Kh2fq3tf9m— Duncan Jones (@ManMadeMoon) January 11, 2016
In a slightly more indirect legacy, Bowie has influenced a wide variety of fictional characters across entertainment. From a character on Venture Bros - revealed to be Bowie himself, to comic book characters like Noh-Varr (Marvel Boy, Marvel Comics), and according to author Neil Gaiman, DC Comics' version of Lucifer who started out in the pages of The Sandman then broke into his own stories (and soon will be on TV).
Bowie himself also acted in films and television on occasion in his career, usually with great impact. From the aforementioned turn as Jareth, to roles in The Man Who Fell to Earth, Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me, The Hunger, and even cameos in Zoolander and SpongeBob SquarePants in a rare voice acting role. He also played the roles of Nikola Tesla in Chris Nolan's The Prestige, and played Pontius Pilate in The Last Temptation of Christ, both to critical acclaim.
His music included contributions to over 400 soundtracks, studio albums, live albums, hit singles like "Space Oddity," "Life on mars," "Fame," "Under Pressure" with Queen, "Let's Dance," "Dancing in the Street" with Mick Jagger, "Hallo Spaceboy" with Pet Shop Boys, "Slow Burn," and too many others to possibly list.
Bowie just turned 69 years old on Friday, January 8, 2016, and celebrated with the release of his 28th studio album, Blackstar. The album was said to be a "parting gift" for fans, and one of the songs, "Lazarus," includes some poignant lyrics:
Look up here, I'm in Heaven!
I've got scars that can't be seen
I've got drama, can't be stolen,
Everybody knows me now
He is survived by his wife Iman, their daughter Alexandria Jones, and his son Duncan Jones.