Thursday 8 December 2016

Transgender actress Alexis Arquette dies at 47

Published 12/09/2016 | 00:06

Alexis Arquette, centre, at an event with sisters Rosanna and Patricia (AP)
Alexis Arquette, centre, at an event with sisters Rosanna and Patricia (AP)

Actress and activist Alexis Arquette has died at the age of 47.

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The transgender actress - sibling of actors David, Rosanna and Patricia Arquette - died on Sunday morning, her brother Richmond wrote on Facebook.

He said the actress, who appeared in films including Pulp Fiction and Last Exit To Brooklyn, died while listening to David Bowie's music.

The post said: "Our brother Robert, who became our brother Alexis, who became our sister Alexis, who became our brother Alexis, passed this morning September 11, at 12:32 am.

"He was surrounded by all of his brothers and sisters, one of his nieces and several other loved ones. We were playing music for him and he passed during David Bowie's Starman.

"As per his wishes, we cheered at the moment that he transitioned to another dimension."

It continued: "He died as he lived, on his own terms. I am immensely grateful that it was fast and painless.

"It was an incredibly moving experience and I am humbled and grateful to have been able to have been with him as he began his journey onward.

"Thank you, Alexis, I love you and will love you always."

A cause of death was not given.

Arquette made her film debut in Down And Out In Beverly Hills in 1986, and landed her first significant role as a transvestite in Last Exit To Brooklyn in 1989.

Other film roles included The Wedding Singer and Lords Of Dogtown.

She transitioned to being a woman in 2006.

Her experience was documented in Alexis Arquette: She's My Brother, which screened at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2007.

She went on to become an activist for transgender rights, and also had roles in television shows including Friends and Californication.

Boy George was among the celebrities to express their condolences.

He wrote on Twitter: "R.I.P my sister Alexis Arquette. Another bright light gone out far too soon. Love to the family and all that loved Alexis."

Actress Ellen Barkin tweeted: "Now cracks a noble heart. Good-night sweet prince. And flights of angels sing thee to thy rest. Beautiful tender soul Alexis Arquette."

Patricia Arquette tweeted a link to Bowie's Starman and wrote: "Breaking through the veil singing StarMan."

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