The author of one of the world’s most famous books, Interview with the Vampire died overnight. Anne Rice, best known for writing the book which was later turned into a Hollywood blockbuster, died at the age of 80 surrounded by her family.
Her son Christopher Rice, 43, also an author, announced on her Facebook page and his Twitter page that Rice had died due to complications from a stroke.
“In her final hours, I sat beside her hospital bed in awe of her accomplishments and her courage,” he wrote.
“The immensity of our family’s grief cannot be overstated. As my mother, her support for me was unconditional – she taught me to embrace my dreams, reject conformity and challenge the dark voices of fear and self-doubt.”
“As a writer, she taught me to defy genre boundaries and surrender to my obsessive passions.”
Over the span of thirty years, Rice wrote more than 30 books, selling more than 150 million copies.
Rice published Interview with the Vampire, her debut novel, at the age of 35 in 1976.
It was later adapted into a movie starring Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt in 1994, nabbing two Academy Award nominations for Best Art Direction-Set Decoration and Music, Original Score.
In 2022, a TV series based on the novel will air on AMC and AMC.
The first season, with eight episodes will be created by Rolin Jones, known for his work on Friday Night Lights and Perry Mason.
Rice was celebrated for her series of novels, The Vampire Chronicles, as well as the series, Queen of the Damned, which was made into a film in 2002, starring late actress Aaliyah.
Rice also wrote erotic fiction under the pseudonyms Anne Rampling and AN Roquelaure.
In 1994, Exit to Eden — a story about a Young Australian photographer who travels to a a dominatrix-themed theme park on a private tropical island to discover his sexuality, was made into a film, starring Rosie O’Donnell and Dan Aykroyd.
In 2010, she publicly denounced Christianity, writing on her Facebook page:
“Today I quit being a Christian…. I remain committed to Christ as always but not to being ‘Christian’ or to being part of Christianity. It’s simply impossible for me to ‘belong’ to this quarrelsome, hostile, disputatious, and deservedly infamous group.”
In 1972, Rice suffered a tragedy when she lost her five-year old daughter, Michele, to leukaemia.
The New Orleans-born author will be publicly commorated in a “celebration of her life” next year— according to her son’s statement.