Dennis Hopper, the Hollywood actor and director whose memorable career included the 1969 hit Easy Rider, has died aged 74. Family friend Alex Hitz said Hopper died at his Los Angeles home, surrounded by family and friends. The actor had been battling prostate cancer. Hopper's rollercoaster career also included Rebel Without A Cause, Blue Velvet and Apocalypse Now. But the improbable success of the 1969 hippie-biker epic Easy Rider remained his biggest triumph. He not only co-starred but directed and co-wrote the film, which also starred Peter Fonda and Jack Nicholson. Hopper, Fonda and Terry Southern were nominated for Oscars for best screenplay. Hopper was a two-time Academy Award nominee, and in March 2010 was honoured with a star on Hollywood's Walk of Fame. After a promising start that included roles in two James Dean films, Hopper's acting career languished as he developed a reputation for throwing tantrums and abusing alcohol and drugs. On the set of True Grit, Hopper so angered John Wayne that the star reportedly chased Hopper with a loaded gun. He also married five times. Fonda produced Easy Rider and Hopper directed it for $380,000 (£262,739). It went on to gross $40 million (£27.5m) worldwide, a substantial sum for its time. British broadcaster Jonathan Ross described Hopper as "one of the greats". In a posting on Twitter, he said: "Dennis Hopper RIP. One of the greats. I was privileged to have met him many years ago"