The musician, whose real name is Jean-Philippe Smet, died after a battle with lung cancer.
His death was announced in a statement by his wife, Laeticia Hallyday, in a statement to Agence France Presse.
She said: “Johnny Hallyday has left us. I write these words without believing them. But yet, it’s true. My man is no longer with us.
“He left us tonight as he lived his whole life, with courage and dignity.”
President of France Emmanuel Macron also paid tribute to the entertainer, as his office said in a statement: “For more than 50 years, he was a vibrant icon.”
Johnny Hallyday was dubbed the ‘French Elvis’ and sold over 110 million records worldwide.
Antonio Carluccio has died, aged 80, on November 8 [Getty]
Over a career that spanned half a century, he went on 181 tours and released 18 platinum albums.
After seeing Elvis Presley on screen in 1957, Hallyway decided he wanted to be a singer and began his transformation into a rock star.
Lenny Kravitz paid tribute to the star as he wrote on Twitter: “Farewell Dear @JohnnySjh. Your friendship, sweetness and support are imprinted in my heart. It is an honor to have known you and to have spent time with you and your beautiful family. Your soul is pure Rock and Roll.”
Celine Dion wrote: “I’m very sad to hear the news that Johnny Hallyday passed away. He was a giant in show business…a true icon!
“My thoughts go out to his family, his loved ones, and to the millions of fans who adored him for many decades. He will be sadly missed, but never forgotten.- Céline xx.”