Verne Troyer has died aged 49.

The actor, who was best known for his portrayal of Mini Me in the 'Austin Powers' movie franchise, has passed away at the age of 49, according to a post on the actor's social media page on Saturday (21.04.18).

Alongside a professional shot of the star, a lengthy statement read: ''It is with great sadness and incredibly heavy hearts to write that Verne passed away today.

''Verne was an extremely caring individual. He wanted to make everyone smile, be happy, and laugh. Anybody in need, he would help to any extent possible. Verne hoped he made a positive change with the platform he had and worked towards spreading that message everyday.

''He inspired people around the world with his drive, determination, and attitude. On film & television sets, commercial shoots, at comic-con's & personal appearances, to his own YouTube videos, he was there to

show everyone what he was capable of doing. Even though his stature was small and his parents often wondered if he'd be able to reach up

and open doors on his own in his life, he went on to open more doors for himself and others than anyone could have imagined. He also touched more peoples hearts than he will ever know.''

The statement went on to praise the star - who also had a role as Griphook the goblin in 'Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone' - for overcoming his own battles throughout the years, and whilst the message doesn't confirm his cause of death, it does hint that he was struggling with depression.

It continued: ''Verne was also a fighter when it came to his own battles. Over the years he's struggled and won, struggled and won, struggled and fought some more, but unfortunately this time was too much.

''During this recent time of adversity he was baptized while surrounded by his family. The family appreciates that they have this time to grieve privately.

''Depression and Suicide are very serious issues. You never know what kind of battle someone is going through inside. Be kind to one another. And always know, it's never too late to reach out to someone for help.''

Verne's family have asked fans who wish to pay their respects to donate in his name to two of his favourite charities.

The statement concluded: ''In lieu of flowers, please feel free to make a donation in Verne's name to either of his two favorite charities; The Starkey Hearing Foundation and Best Buddies.''