The Human Centipede’s Dieter Laser has passed away at the age of 78. Horror fans will recognize him from that aughts classic movie along with the other stops on an impressive career. A source close to his family released a short statement confirming the news on Twitter and the outpouring of support was palpable. Laser actually passed back in February of this year, but no one was able to confirm it until now. Back in 2009, he won Best Actor at the Austin Fantastic Fest for his role as the creepy Dr. Heiter in the film. There was also a Fright Meter Award in the following year for his performance as well.

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A truly bizarre concept that Laser helped bring to life is now hailed as one of the most memorable films from that first decade of the new millennium. But, the actor has been working for far longer. Back in 1975, he won a German Film Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role for John Glückstadt. Laser’s last role was in 2017’s November and other film appearances include The Lost Honor of Katharina Blum (1975), The Elixirs of the Devil (1976), Conversation with the Beast (1996), and Big Girls Don’t Cry in (2002).

Tom Six directed The Human Centipede and shared his thoughts after learning the news. He seems to be legitimately shocked by the tweet, as do so many fans online. But, he’s very proud of the work they put on screen together.

Six wrote, “I’m totally shocked Dieter passed away. He was a force of nature, an unique human being and an iconic actor. I’m so damn proud we created pop culture together. Wished we could have made many more movies. RIP my friend, you will live forever on screen!”

Chris Cooke is a co-director of the Mayhem Film Festival and had the pleasure of hosting Laser before. He also chimed in with some quick remembrances of The Human Centipede star.

Cooke began, “Just hearing the sad news that Dieter Laser, star of the Human Centipede sequence has passed away. A great actor, with a fantastic career and one of the coolest people I have ever met @mayhem_festival”

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