Avatar composer James Horner dies in plane crash, Hollywood mourns

  • Agencies, Los Angeles
  • Updated: Jun 23, 2015 15:31 IST

Hollywood composer James Horner, who scored the Oscar-winning film Titanic and its mega-hit theme song, My Heart Will Go On, has died in a plane crash. Tributes came in from Hollywood stars and celebs, who lauded his music legacy.

Top actors and directors in the television and film world paid tribute to Horner online.

"Incredibly saddened to hear about the loss of James Horner. I grew up loving his work. He leaves behind a spectacular musical legacy," television series creator Seth MacFarlane tweeted.

"There is nothing that shaped my movie-going experience more than the musical genius of James Horner. He will live on through the ages," tweeted actor Rob Lowe.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, Horner's plane was immediately destroyed on impact and the pilot was alone in the aircraft when it crashed. Fire officials reported that they found the burning wreckage in the west of the Highway 33 in Southern California, and within the one-acre burn zone discovered the tail section of the two-seater S312 Tucano MK1 single-engine turboprop plane, which was registered in composer's name.

His death was confirmed by Sylvia Patrycja, who is identified on Horner's film music page as his assistant.

"We have lost an amazing person with a huge heart and unbelievable talent. He died doing what he loved. Thank you for all your support and love and see you down the road," Patrycja wrote on social networking website Facebook on Monday.

Jay Cooper, a prominent music industry attorney, confirmed that a plane that crashed in the Los Padres National Forest, north of Los Angeles, belonged to his client Horner, 61. The cause of the crash was not immediately known.

Horner won two Academy Awards for his work on Titanic - one for the movie's score and one he shared with lyricist Will Jennings for best original song, My Heart Will Go On, performed by Celine Dion. His fruitful partnership with Cameron also netted him Oscar nominations for original score for the blockbusters in the 1986 film Aliens and 2009 film Avatar.

The duo reportedly were also at work on Avatar sequels.

Horner also composed the music for an array of other major films, including The Karate Kid, and Braveheart. His scores for Avatar, A Beautiful Mind and House of Sand and Fog earned Oscar nominations, bringing the tally of total nominations to 10.

Horner has three films coming out soon -- Southpaw, the boxing drama that stars Jake Gyllenhaal and Rachel McAdams and is due in theaters in July; Jean-Jacques Annaud's Wolf Totem, out in September; and The 33, a drama based on the 2010 mining disaster in Chile that's set for November.

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James Horner was the heart of Titanic: James Cameron
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