Leonard Nimoy, best known for playing Spock in Star Trek and related movies, died in his home today due to complications from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Nimoy disappeared into the character of Spock for more than 50 years, saying he began to take on Spock’s characteristics while shooting the series and never shaking the public persona, remaining a science-fiction convention headliner and highly sought after guest star right up until his death. Nimoy even said he had an identity crisis with the character, and released two volumes of autobiography, I am not Spock in 1975 followed by I am Spock in 1995, which included conversations he had with the character.
Nimoy led a decent film career, garnering several nominations for playing Spock but also David Kibner in Invasion of the Body Snatchers and Morris Meyerson in A Woman Called Golda. Nimoy also tried his hand in writing and directing, directing Star Trek III: The Search for Spock, directing his own screenplay in Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home and writing Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country. Nimoy directed four films outside of the franchise, but the venture was largely unsuccessful. His first was the comedy Three Men and a Baby, a smash hit that held the top domestic gross of 1987 ahead of classics like Fatal Attraction, Good Morning Vietnam and Lethal Weapon, but his other three efforts all bombed.
Nimoy, for better or worse, will always be remembered as Spock, and in that memory, he will always be adored as a cultural touchstone. He leaves behind two children and a wife of 26 years.