Legendary author Richard Matheson, whose stories such as "I Am Legend" and "The Shrinking Man" have been turned into movies, passed away on Sunday, June 23 in Los Angeles. He was 87. Matheson's daughter, Ali, said that the science-fiction and horror author was "surrounded by the people and things he loved" at the time of his passing, as reported by Daily Mail.
Matheson was born in Allendale, New Jersey, in 1926. He started publishing his stories in 1950s. In his 60 years of career, Matheson's stories have been adapted into several movies. "I Am Legend", which was published in 1954, was turned into film at least three times, in 1964 as "The Last Man on Earth", "The Omega Man" in 1971 and "I Am Legend" in 2007, starring Will Smith.
His 1953 story "Hell House" was adapted into a movie entitled "The Legend of Hell House" in 1973. Matheson 1956's novel "The Shrinking Man" was adapted into motion picture twice as "The Incredible Shrinking Man" in 1957 and "The Incredible Shrinking Woman" in 1981. "A Stir of Echoes" and "What Dreams May Come" were turned into movies as well.
According to the Associated Press, Matheson was expected to receive the Visionary Award at the Academy of Science Fiction, Horror and Fantasy Films' Saturn Awards on Wednesday. The 39th annual ceremony will be dedicated to the author and the award will be presented posthumously.
"We are heartbroken to lose a writer of towering talent, unlimited imagination and unparalleled inspiration. Richard was a genius whose visions helped bring legitimacy and critical acclaim to science fiction and fantasy. He was also a longtime supporter of the academy, and everyone associated with the Saturn Awards feels emptier today to learn of this enormous loss," said the Academy's president, Robert Holguin.