Reynolds re-emerged previous year for personal project "The Last Movie Star", which looked into the life of a faded star filled with regret and longing, an exaggerated version of the actor content to living a mostly quiet life in Jupiter, Florida.
The actor had struggled with health issues in recent years and underwent major heart surgery in February 2010.
He also fronted such commercial favorites as "Smokey and the Bandit", and had a hit TV show in the 1990s with "Evening Shade". Some of his best include Deliverance (1972), The Last Yard (1974), Smokey and the Bandit (1977), and Boogie Nights (1997), the latter of which scored him an Oscar nod.
Reynolds called it "by far" his best film. Film pundits never much cared for his laissez faire style, but audiences loved him. Maybe she'll phone me one day.
In his 2015 memoir But Enough About Me, he said: "I didn't open myself to new writers or risky parts because I wasn't interested in challenging myself as an actor". He was playing a lot of rather serious characters around this time and his Tonight Show appearances showed how charming he could be, as well.
"It was the only time I saw men get up, sick, and walk out of a theater", he added.
Reynolds turned down some notable roles, including Han Solo in "Star Wars", which went to Harrison Ford; the title role in a James Bond film; and the astronaut in "Terms of Endearment" that Jack Nicholson turned into an Oscar-winning performance.
After a series of box office misfires, he returned to his roots in television acting and starred in the sitcom Evening Shade from 1990 to 1994.
In December, audiences will see Reynolds in one of his final roles in Defining Moments. His first film role came in 1961's "Angel Baby", and he followed it with numerous other mediocre movies, the kind, he liked to joke, that were shown in airplanes and prisons.
"You can only hold your stomach in for so many hours". "Such a nice man, true friend & a good soul!" The megastar on set was really nice and cool to this punk actor (me) for no reason. Well, so far, so good. I don't know why I was so stupid.
"I don't like those people, I feel like they are due for a very hard time because they tried to do legitimate film and they're never going to be able to", he said.
Reynolds' personal life sometimes overshadowed his movies, with marriages that ended in divorce to actresses Anderson and Judy Carne and romances with the likes of Dinah Shore. Reynolds and Anderson adopted a son, Quinton Anderson Reynolds, now 30.