By now it has become pretty clear that 2016 intends on becoming one of the most depressing years in recent memory. Simply too many Hollywood greats have been taken from us far too soon. We've bid farewell to some amazing pop culture icons over the last few months, and sadly, we must do it again. It's truly a sad day for film nerds everywhere, as we have just learned that iconic character actor Michael Massee has passed away.

Michael Massee

A new report from Variety confirms that legendary actor Michael Massee passed away earlier this week after a long battle with cancer. The shock of his death almost immediately reverberated through Hollywood, as former co-stars have flocked to social media to collectively mourn his passing and celebrate his extensive career. His memory lives on through his wife, as well as his two children; Massee was 61-years-old.

The weight of Michael Massee's career really cannot be understated. Although he never really attained notoriety as a headlining actor, he worked prolifically as an incredibly talented character actor for several decades. His work in the realm of television includes, but is certainly not limited to: 24, Alias, and CSI, and he also provided his voice for several popular animated projects, such as The Batman, and Ultimate Avengers. On the silver screen, he appeared in noteworthy roles for films like The Amazing Spider-Man series, Se7en, and The Crow. Even if you never knew his name, it would be hard to go through life as an avid moviegoer without ever seeing him or hearing his voice, and that's something to be proud of.

One of the few dark moments of Michael Massee's career came during the infamous production of 1994's The Crow. The actor had the misfortune of being handed an improperly prepared stunt gun, which proceeded to malfunction while filming and kill the film's star, Brandon Lee. Although Massee could never have foreseen the tragic accident, he spent many of the following years vocally racked with guilt and refused to even watch The Crow as a result.

Oddly enough, one of Michael Massee's most mysterious roles recently experienced a resurgence of relevance. During the press junket for Hacksaw Ridge, Andrew Garfield revealed that even he still has no knowledge about the true nature of the "Man in the Shadows" from The Amazing Spider-Man post-credits sequences. As it turns out, Michael Massee actually portrayed this character, and now it seems that we will never know what the Web Head's short-lived franchise had in store for this incredibly talented and beloved actor.

It's with the heaviest of hearts that we bid farewell to this iconic thespian. Michael Massee may not be gone, but his legacy definitely lives on through his extensive body of work. No matter what, that is most certainly something worth celebrating.

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