Michael Crichton -- whose books were made into films including "The Andromeda Strain," "Jurassic Park" and "Twister" -- died Tuesday. He was 66.
The author died "after a courageous and private battle against cancer," according to his Web site. Despite his illness, a statement on MichaelCrichton.net said Crichton died "unexpectedly" in Los Angeles.The "in memoriam" posting added: "While the world knew him as a great storyteller that challenged our preconceived notions about the world around us -- and entertained us all while doing so -- his wife Sherri, daughter Taylor, family and friends knew Michael Crichton as a devoted husband, loving father and generous friend who inspired each of us to strive to see the wonders of our world through new eyes. He did this with a wry sense of humor that those who were privileged to know him personally will never forget. "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."He will be profoundly missed by those whose lives he touched, but he leaves behind the greatest gifts of a thirst for knowledge, the desire to understand, and the wisdom to use our minds to better our world. "Michael's family respectfully asks for privacy during this difficult time. A private funeral service is expected, but no further details will be released to the public."
CARL DI ORIO, "THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER"