Sylvester Stallone, who appeared alongside the iconic Smokey and the Bandit star in the Stallone-scripted Driven in 2001, remembered Reynolds with an Instagram post, recounting how the actor once told him he should have cast him in the first Rambo movie.
“I said that’s impossible, because you’re too expensive and too famous, and probably tougher than Rambo,” Stallone wrote, adding Reynolds “had a great sense of humor and I enjoyed his company so much.”
Bodybuilder-turned-movie star Arnold Schwarzenegger called Reynolds “one of my heroes” and “a trailblazer.”
“He showed the way to transition from being an athlete to being the highest paid actor, and he always inspired me,” Schwarzenegger wrote on Twitter.
Comedian Norm Macdonald, who famously and lovingly parodied ‘70s-era Reynolds six separate times in the long-running Celebrity Jeopardy! sketch on Saturday Night Live, later said on The Howard Stern Show he pitched the popular skit specifically because he “wanted to do Burt Reynolds.”
“I met Burt Reynolds though, which was amazing,” Macdonald said, explaining Reynolds was “real nice to me” and “one of my childhood heroes.” In a tweet published Thursday, Macdonald wrote, “Big Burt is up in heaven slapping around little Bert.”
Macdonald’s frequent collaborator and friend Adam Sandler, who headlined 2005 football-centric comedy The Longest Yard with Reynolds, memorialized Reynolds as a “true legend” who was “funny as hell and a for-real badass.”
Baywatch and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 star David Hasselhoff hailed the “dashing, charming and just so lovable” Reynolds on Twitter as “the best, funniest super hero on this planet.”
“Burt Reynolds was a friend of mine, sad to hear of his passing,” wrote Star Wars and Batman star Billy Dee Williams on Twitter.
Family Feud and talk show host Steve Harvey remembered Reynolds as “a great actor, a philanthropist and a pioneer of the cool mustache,” while Ming-Na Wen, star of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., said the late star “will always be a Hollywood legend.”
“My condolences to his family. And to his manager, who is also mine,” Wen added. “He lost a dear friend today.”
Supergirl and The Flash director Kevin Smith called Reynolds “the movie star of my childhood,” crediting the “true American icon” for showcasing “the fun of movie-making in the end credits of his flicks.”
Reynolds was next to appear in the Quentin Tarantino-directed Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, but reportedly did not yet shoot his scenes, according to TMZ. The late ‘60s-set drama involves the notorious Manson Family murders and stars Leonardo DiCaprio, Brad Pitt, and Margot Robbie.
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A sad day, my friend BURT REYNOLDS Has passed away. I remember him back in 1979, he always reminded me that I should’ve cast him as Colonel Trautman in FIRST BLOOD , I said that’s impossible, because you’re too expensive and too famous, and probably tougher than Rambo ! He laughed , He had a great sense of humor and I enjoyed his company so much... RIP
Burt Reynolds was one of my heroes. He was a trailblazer. He showed the way to transition from being an athlete to being the highest paid actor, and he always inspired me. He also had a great sense of humor - check out his Tonight Show clips. My thoughts are with his family.— Arnold (@Schwarzenegger) September 6, 2018
Burt Reynolds was a friend of mine, sad to hear of his passing.— Billy Dee Williams (@realbdw) September 6, 2018
Burt Reynolds & Clint Eastwood were fired from GUNSMOKE & RAWHIDE at the same time. Burt was told he couldn't act and Clint his neck was too skinny. In the parking lot, Burt said to Clint, "I dunno what you're gonna do, but I'm gonna take acting lessons." #RIPBurtReynolds— Patton Oswalt (@pattonoswalt) September 6, 2018
Worked with Burt Reynolds on a TV show once. He introduced himself by saying, "Hi, I'm Burt Reynolds. I used to be big in the 70's." How do you not love that?— Michael Ian Black (@michaelianblack) September 6, 2018
Big Burt is up in heaven slapping around little Bert. #onefewerB*rt inthispooroldworld— Norm Macdonald (@normmacdonald) September 6, 2018
Very sad to hearing about the passing of Burt Reynolds. He was a great actor, a philanthropist and a pioneer of the cool mustache. Thank you, Burt. You will be missed. pic.twitter.com/nuuFWMSnJg— Steve Harvey (@IAmSteveHarvey) September 6, 2018
As THE movie star of my childhood, the Bandit stole our hearts for decades. I always loved how Burt Reynolds worked with his friends as often as he could and then showcased the fun of movie-making in the end credits of his flicks. He was true American icon. Hate to see him go... https://t.co/jaMZjJA4e8— KevinSmith (@ThatKevinSmith) September 6, 2018
“Stroker Ace was born to race”— Dale Earnhardt Jr. (@DaleJr) September 6, 2018
Much respect to you Burt Reynolds. RIP pic.twitter.com/w8FlIShmIR
Burt Reynolds. True legend. Our hero. Funny as hell and a for-real badass. So many great movies. So many great stories. Such a great Dad. Will be missed by all. Deepest condolences to his family.— Adam Sandler (@AdamSandler) September 6, 2018
This is such sad news. Burt Reynolds will always be a Hollywood legend. I loved his films!September 6, 2018