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Actor Michael Nyqvist Dead At 56

| by Jonathan Constante

Actor Michael Nyqvist has died at age 56 after a year-long battle with lung cancer.

The Swedish actor was best known for his roles in the "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" films and "John Wick." His representative, Alissa Feldman, confirmed his death, saying Nyqvist "passed away quietly surrounded by family," CNN reported.

"Michael's joy and passion were infectious to those who knew and loved him," she told CNN on behalf of Nyqvist's family and friends. "His charm and charisma were undeniable, and his love for the arts was felt by all who had the pleasure of working with him."

Nyqvist played the role of Mikael Blomkvist in the 2009 Swedish films "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo," "The Girl Who Played With Fire," and "The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest." The films were based on the novels by Stieg Larsson.

Nyqvist also made appearances in "John Wick," "Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol," and "Hunter Killer," an action movie that has yet to be released. He starred alongside Gerard Butler in the forthcoming movie.

Butler took to Twitter to share a video with the late actor's family

"Sending my condolences to Michael Nyqvist and his family," Butler wrote. "Incredibly talented and an extraordinary human being. My heart is broken."

Butler's tweet has been liked more than 3,000 times and retweeted more than 750 times since it was posted on June 27. Several fans replied to post, extending their own condolences and paying tribute to the Nyqvist.

"You're a good soul Gerry. Sending my prayers. Know he's in a beautiful peaceful place now," wrote one user.

"So sorry to hear of his passing especially at his age," wrote another. "He was amazing in John Wick."

"Bless his soul!! Pray for the ones he leaves behind!! R.I.P!" added another fan. "1 of the best bad guys in a flick in a loooong time!! Thank you Sir!!!"

"Gerry I just woke up to this sad news so young and such a talented actor may he R.I.P.," another user tweeted. "I'm so sorry that you have lost a great friend."

"My deepest condolences to the family. R.I.P MICHAEL," tweeted another user. "The gates will be open for you such a talented guy."

Nyqvist was born on Nov. 8, 1960 in Stockholm, and was raised by adoptive parents, The New York Times reported. He said being an orphan and confronting the mystery of his biological parents was the most traumatic part of his life.

The actor said his adoptive parents told him they picked him as an orphan when he was 6 years old. They told him to keep it a secret, but Nyqvist told Swedish magazine Hemmets Journal in 2013.

“A secret that made me very lonely,” the actor told the magazine.

Nyqvist met his biological parents in his 30s. He met his mother once in a Stockholm cafe and his father, a pharmacist named Marcello, in Italy, according to his 2010 autobiography.

“It’s life before and after I got my Italian family. The change was felt throughout my body,” Nyqvist added. “I have accepted my background -- it is no longer distressed or diffused.”

The actor is survived by his wife, Catharina, and their two children, Ellen and Arthur.

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