George Clooney leads tribute to actor Miguel Ferrer following his death

George Clooney has led the tributes to beloved character actor Miguel Ferrer, who sadly passed away on Jan. 19 at the age of 61 after a battle with cancer. In a touching statement released to People, George remembered the veteran actor – his cousin on his father's side – who he said had made the world "a brighter place".

"Today history will mark giant changes in our world, and lost to most will be that on the same day Miguel Ferrer lost his battle to throat cancer. But not lost to his family," George said.

TAP FOR GALLERY George Clooney has paid tribute to his late cousin Miguel Ferrer.

"Miguel made the world brighter and funnier and his passing is felt so deeply in our family that events of the day (monumental events), pale in comparison. We love you Miguel. We always will."

Miguel, who starred as Assistant Director Owen Grange on NCIS: Los Angeles for five years, died peacefully at his home on Thursday after a long battle with cancer. He was surrounded by his wife Lori, sons Lukas and Rafi, and his brother and sisters, CBS said in a statement.

Miguel pictured with his wife Lori.

Born in Santa Monica in 1955, Miguel was the son of Jose Ferrer and Rosemary Clooney. He started his career in the 1980s and is best known for playing villain Bob Morton in the 1987 movie RoboCop, Dr Garret Macy in Crossing Jordan and FBI Agent Albert Rosenfield on Twin Peaks.

After news of his death broke, a number of Hollywood stars and former colleagues took to social media to pay their respects.

LL Cool J wrote: "Love you my brother. I'm glad you smiled and stayed strong until the finish. Sleep well in the arms of the almighty." Dana Delaney said: "Miguel was a wonderful actor and a sweetheart. Too soon", while Kyle MacLachlan added: "Awful news… Miguel Ferrer is gone. Agent Rosenfield, I love you. RIP."

LL Cool J also remembered the talented actor

NCIS: LA showrunner R. Scott Gimmel also released a statement following Miguel’s passing: "Today, NCIS: Los Angeles lost a beloved family member. Miguel was a man of tremendous talent who had a powerful dramatic presence on screen, a wicked sense of humour, and a huge heart. Our thoughts go out to his wife Lori, his sons, and his entire family. He will be greatly missed."

HELLO! Canada magazine is available for your tablet and smartphone. Get HELLO! Canada, PEOPLE, Vanity Fair and over 100 more of the world’s best magazines for one low monthly price at Texture by Next Issue. CLICK HERE to sign up for a free trial.