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'Free Willy' actor August Schellenberg dead at 77

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Canadian actor August Schellenberg, who starred in the Free Willy films, died at his Dallas home after a fight with lung cancer. He was 77.

The actor’s agent, Jamie Levitt, says Schellenberg died Thursday surrounded by his family.

Schellenberg appeared in numerous television roles and was in all three Free Willy movies. In 2007, he was nominated for an Emmy for Best Supporting Actor in a Miniseries or Movie for his role as Chief Sitting Bull in Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee.

Levitt says one of Schellenberg’s last notable works was in 2012, playing the lead in Shakespeare’s King Lear in an all-Canadian cast in at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa.

She described Schellenberg as a loving family man and an iconic Canadian actor.