Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez Dies at 58

4:16 PM PST 03/05/2013 by John Hecht
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Hugo Chavez

The fiery leftist leader had been battling cancer for two years.

MEXICO CITY -- The Venezuelan government announced on Tuesday that President Hugo Chavez has died after a long bout with cancer. He was 58.

The often controversial, yet always charismatic Venezuelan leader, had his share of Hollywood supporters over the years, including actor Sean Penn, who attended a December candlelight vigil for the ailing president in Bolivia. Filmmaker Oliver Stone also had close ties with Chavez, especially after filming the pro-Chavez biopic South of the Border.

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Venezuelan helmer Jonathan Jakubowicz, who is currently working on the Roberto Duran biopic Hands of Stone with Gael Garcia Bernal and Robert De Niro, had the following reaction: "I just think it's interesting that the news was announced on the anniversary of Stalin's death".

In Chavez's last tweet he said, "I'm still clinging to Christ and trust my doctors and nurses. Until victory, always!! We will live and overcome!!!

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