Hollywood lost one of its first stars of 2011 on Sunday when Inception actor Pete Postlethwaite passed away at the age of 64. The Oscar nominated actor was suffering from a long battle with cancer. Pete is survived by his wife Jackie and two children William and Lily. His family has rightfully asked for privacy at this time and have not reached out to the media for statements.

Steven Spielberg once called Pete one of the best actors in the world. Pete responded by saying that he thinks Steven must have actually said that Pete thinks he is the best actor in the world. Spielberg has worked with Pete on films The Lost World and Amistad. He was most recently recognized for his outstanding performance in the films, Inception and The Town.

Pete was nominated for his Oscar in 1993 for his role in the film, In the Name of the Father. He also received high acclaim for his role in The Usual Suspects. Although the exact cause of death is unknown, Pete’s battle with testicular cancer began in 1990 and it was said that the last few weeks had been painful for the actor. Our thoughts go out to his family at this time.