Malibu actor Francesco Quinn dies at 48

The longtime resident apparently suffered a heart attack.

By Kim Devore / The Malibu Times

Francesco Quinn, the 48-year-old son of the late actor Anthony Quinn, reportedly died of a heart attack Friday near his La Costa area home. Neighbors said they saw Quinn walking on the street with his son when he collapsed.

According to his agent, Quinn was pronounced dead at Santa Monica-UCLA Medical Center. The official cause of death has not been determined.

Quinn, a father of three, was a well-known figure in the Malibu community. He made his most recent public appearance a little more than a week ago at the Malibu Times Magazine’s anniversary party on the Malibu Pier. Quinn was featured in a recent profile in The Malibu Times-owned magazine and spoke of his acting career, passions and legendary family.

Lean and athletic, Quinn was an avid cyclist. Earlier this summer, he joined a group of friends, including The Malibu Times’ Kathy May, for a ride from Beverly Hills to Malibu.

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“He was so excited about the ride,” May recalled. “He suggested I do it and I am so glad I did.”

Neighbors and friends said they are shocked by Quinn’s sudden death.

“I’d see him out here all the time on his walks,” Cesar Abou-Haidar said. “He was a great guy. It’s a real loss to the community.”

Quinn followed in his famous father’s acting footsteps. He appeared in numerous films including Oliver Stone’s 1986 Oscar winner, “Platoon.”

On the small screen, he had recurring roles on prime time series, including “JAG,” “24” and “The Shield.”

One of his most recent projects was a documentary that he was producing about the world of bull fighting in Mexico, called “Sun and Shadow.”

Quinn was one of 13 children and was born in Rome in 1963 to Anthony Quinn and his second wife, Jolanda Addolori.

Quinn’s father won two Academy Awards and starred in “Lawrence of Arabia” and “Zorba the Greek.” His family moved to New York, where Quinn studied acting and later moved to Los Angeles where he landed his first role in “Platoon.” Quinn and his father worked together on several projects, including a 1990 television movie adaptation of Hemingway’s “Old Man and the Sea” and an Italian film, “Stradivari.”

Quinn also recently performed in Malibu at Pepperdine University in an adaptation of Mikhail Bulgakov’s “The Master and the Margarita.” The Italy-America Chamber of Commerce, in conjunction with the Italian Consulate and Italian Cultural Institute, promoted the performance. Quinn’s wife, Valentina Castellani-Quinn, an artist and fashion designer, was a stronger supporter of her husband, and worked tirelessly promoting the Pepperdine performance, as well as his other projects.

Together, they headed a project last year to restore a large mural of Anthony Quinn in Downtown Los Angeles, which employed at-risk youth and celebrates the Latino community’s noted muralists and its cultural influence.

Francesco Quinn is survived by his wife and three children.

Family and friends are invited to attend a memorial service for Quinn, which will take place Aug. 11 at 9:15 a.m. at the St. Monica Catholic Church, 725 California Ave. Santa Monica CA 90403. In lieu of flowers or gifts, a college trust fund for the children is being established.

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