R.I.P. Tony Scott

Director-producer Tony Scott, brother of Ridley Scott, has died at the age of 68 in an act of suicide. Officials say that Scott left a suicide note in his car, climbed over a fence on the Vincent Thomas Bridge near Long Beach, California, and jumped off.

Suicide is always tragic, and nearly always surprising. When it’s a celebrity, the tragic nature of it is the same, but the surprise factor always seems a little higher, especially when it’s a man like Scott, who had projects currently in production, such as the upcoming miniseries Coma. It’s easy to forget that success doesn’t necessarily render a person immune to depression or other problems.

Tony Scott was director of nearly two dozen films, and producer on nearly twice as many. His cinematic legacy includes Days of Thunder, The Last Boy Scout, and Beverly Hills Cop II. He also directed the remake of The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3, Man on Fire, and Spy Game. And, of course, Top Gun. He was rumored to have been looking into a sequel to his 1986 classic when he died.

I have personally yet to see many of his films, but there are several of his that I have been told are films I should. Many of his films are well-loved; most were major box-office successes. I had the pleasure of seeing Top Gun for the first time about ten years ago, when a local second-run theatre decided to have midnight matinees of older films for one summer. Seeing it on the big screen was a wonderful way to be introduced to it; it was easy to see how this film could inspire young men to join the Air Force. It was also easy to see how it cemented the futures of Tom Cruise and Val Kilmer as A-list actors.

Mr. Scott, I don’t know why you felt you had to leave. I hope you find some solace on the other side. I wish we could have seen more from you.

UPDATE: It is now being reported that Tony Scott had been diagnosed with inoperable brain cancer. This at least explains his decision, though it’s still just as tragic.

About Morgan R. Lewis

Fan of movies and other media
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16 Responses to R.I.P. Tony Scott

  1. Mark Walker says:

    Man, that’s a bit of a shocker. I actually thought this post was a joke when I started it. Sad news indeed Morgan.

    • I know what you mean about thinking it was a joke… I first saw it on Twitter, checked the source and wasn’t familiar with them at first. I actually waited a bit for other news sources to start trickling in (my first Google News search only turned up two hits). Definitely a shocker.

  2. Jaina says:

    Very sad that he felt he had to commit suicide. While I can’t comment on the man, I adored so many of his films. Man on Fire, Crimson Tide, Beverly Hills Cop 2, Top Gun, Unstoppable. So many great films directed by him.

  3. I can’t stop crying. It’s a habit that I wake up and immediately check my email for anything important. This morning, at 5:32am, I woke up to three messages confirming Tony Scott had indeed committed suicide. Granted, he’s not one of my favorite directors. I’ve only seen three of his films: Unstoppable, Déjà Vu, and Top Gun (though I vaguely remember that last title). I’m still just as saddened. Unstoppable was his final work, right? Who would’ve known? Why did he have to leave? At that high point, he could have likely produced several more great films, I believe. Though we could say he ended his career solidly. I’ve always made fun of scenes in movies where the main character does nothing but repeat “No” and “This can’t be”. Right now, that’s about all I can manage to do. May he rest in peace.

    • It looks like Unstoppable was indeed his last directed film… he’s got a lot of films still in the works, according to IMDb, but it looks like they were all as producer.

      I haven’t seen many of his films either. Just Top Gun and Spy Game. Still quite a shock to see someone go out like that, though.

  4. le0pard13 says:

    Truly shocking. So sad.

  5. S says:

    A tragedy for both his family and the film industry. In this case, Tony Scott has given us some truly great films in both directing and producing. Here are some of his best for me. RIP TScott.

    Top Gun blockbuster from the 80s; great fun
    Enemy of the State rivoting pace and characters
    Spy Game very interesting chess game plot
    Days of Thunder a fun NASCAR movie, great actors
    Beverly Hills Cop II super followon to BHC
    Clay Pigeons Vince Vaughn in maybe his best role(not 4 kids)

    The Gathering Storm follows Churchill’s life in UK pre-WW2
    Into the Storm follows Churchill & UK entering WW2

    Pillars of Earth a great read that was adapted well on film
    Numbers remains a solid TV show that used a big data plot vehicle before most people knew what big data was

    • Thanks for the list, S. I’ve had most of those that I haven’t seen on my to-see list already, but hadn’t really heard of Clay Pigeons. He really did have quite the filmography.

  6. A shocker and a great loss.

    Sure, he’s had some run of the mill actioners, but he’s also had some great ones.

    The best, that I’m a little surprised no one has mentioned yet, is the Quentin Tarrantino penned “True Romance”. A small crime gem. 😦

    I heard it here first, man. Checked my GMail and saw your post. Breaking news right here at the MoM.

    • Yeah, I literally didn’t believe it at first. Figured it had to have been some sort of prank, like when someone updated Roger Ebert’s Wikipedia page to say he’d fallen out of a window. I actually had to wait for it to trickle in from more than one source in order to be sure it was true, it’s so surreal.

      I’ve been seeing True Romance getting the love on Twitter today, so it’s not being overlooked.

  7. Max says:

    I’ve only seen Unstoppable and Top Gun, so I really don’t have a feeling on his filmography. Whatever the reason for his jumping (yes it appears it had to do with brain cancer), it’s a damn shame it had to end that way. I guess an argument could be made that at least he chose his own way out of the world instead of being in chemo for months on end. I won’t discuss what is right and wrong here though. RIP Tony Scott.

  8. It is sad that he chose to end his life in such fashion.

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