Peter Fonda’s extended family was the closest thing to a Hollywood acting dynasty as there can be, but the late actor’s son, Justin Fonda, decided to pick a less conventional path to show business.
In the wake of Peter’s death on Friday, after a battle with lung cancer led to respiratory failure, there has been renewed attention on the three generations of stars making up the entire Fonda family. Amid the family of famous actors and directors, Justin decided to forge his own path to Hollywood and work not as the on-screen talent, but as part of the crew working behind the scenes.
There were stars throughout the family. Peter’s father, Henry Fonda, was a legendary actor and Academy Award winner. His sister, Jane Fonda, was a famous actress in her own right, as was his daughter, Bridget Fonda.
But son Justin Fonda decided that, after a brief on-screen career, that wasn’t the route for him. As his IMDB page shows, Justin has a number of movie credits to his name, but nearly all of them are roles that kept him behind the camera. While Justin and his sister Bridget made their on-screen debuts with cameos in their father’s best-known work, Easy Rider, Bridget apparently caught the acting bug and her brother did not.
Justin worked as a cameraman in a series of movies and television shows. His last work came in 2000, when he worked as a first assistant camera on the movies Mercy Streets and Vertical Limit.
Justin Fonda and other family members released a statement on Friday announcing Peter’s passing at the age of 79-years-old.
“It is with deep sorrow that we share the news that Peter Fonda has passed away,” the family said in a statement that was shared with CNN. “In one of the saddest moments of our lives, we are not able to find the appropriate words to express the pain in our hearts.”
Jane Fonda released a statement of her own mourning her little brother’s death and remembering his legacy in Hollywood and beyond.
“I am very sad. He was my sweet-hearted baby brother,” Fonda said in the statement provided to Deadline. “The talker of the family. I have had beautiful alone time with him these last days. He went out laughing.”
As a number of figures from across the entertainment industry have taken to social media to remember Peter Fonda, many have offered condolences to Justin and the rest of the Fonda family.