Tony Scott's family rejects reports of terminal cancer
Mystery remains over why Top Gun director jumped off Los Angeles bridge
Nick Clark is the arts correspondent of The Independent. He joined the newspaper in June 2007, initially reporting on the stock markets. He has covered beats including the City, and technology, media and telecoms and made the switch to arts in December 2011. He has also contributed articles to the sports section.
Wednesday 22 August 2012
The mystery surrounding the death of the celebrated film director Tony Scott deepened yesterday as his family hit back at American reports that his suicide had been prompted by a terminal illness.
The British filmmaker, whose work included Top Gun and True Romance, died in Los Angeles on Sunday in what is being treated as suicide. The broadcaster ABC soon after reported that he had been diagnosed with inoperable brain cancer.
Scott's widow hit back yesterday. Donna Wilson told investigators that rumours of brain cancer were "absolutely false", according to the celebrity gossip site TMZ, adding that Scott had no other severe medical issues.
ABC News subsequently backtracked with another article headlined "Tony Scott Brain Cancer Report Appears in Doubt".
Few additional clues have emerged as to why the 68-year-old filmmaker would take his own life. A post-mortem examination has taken place, but the results could take up to two months to be released. Police have found a suicide note in his office, but the details have been kept private.
Scott, the younger brother of fellow director Ridley, whose films include Blade Runner and Gladiator, was working on the sequel to the Tom Cruise-led Top Gun at the time of his death. The star and the director of the 1986 blockbuster had been scouting locations for the movie.
Scott was also due to direct Narco Sub and Lucky Stripe, both of which were in advanced development, according to The Hollywood Reporter, with a remake of The Wild Bunch also mooted.
Ridley Scott, who worked with his brother on Scott Free Productions, suspended production of his film The Counselor and flew from London to Los Angeles on Monday.
In the wake of the tragedy, Cruise said the director was a "creative visionary whose mark on film is immeasurable" and said he was a "dear friend and I will really miss him".
The news of his death shocked Hollywood, and tributes for the director poured in from stars and directors including Denzel Washington, Ron Howard and Val Kilmer, who called him "the kindest film director I ever worked for". Harry Gregson-Williams who had composed the music for all of Scott's films since Enemy of the State, said he was a "truly unforgettable and formidable artist to work with".
One stunned film industry insider based in London said he had spoken to the director on Saturday, "and he had sounded fine".
According to the coroner, Scott jumped from the Vincent Thomas Bridge in San Pedro just after midday on Sunday. Reports emerged yesterday that some onlookers had filmed the incident and had offered it to news agencies.
International Women's Day 2014: The shocking statistics that show why it is still so important
Malaysia Airlines: Officials pore over airport CCTV as passengers with stolen passports heighten terrorism concern
Singapore sting: Sky-high prices are pushing locals to the edge of affordability
International Women’s Day: 'When a man gives his opinion, he's a man. When a woman gives her opinion, she's a bitch' - feminist quotes from female icons to inspire you
Dead woman's body found sitting in a car after six years after direct debits ran $54,000 bank account dry
Britain's top vet sparks controversy with call for ban on slashing animals' throats in 'ritual' slaughters for halal and kosher meat products
Ukraine crisis: Russia dismisses '3am ultimatum' as 'total nonsense'
If you're horrified by a flame-roasted dog, you should be shocked at a hog roast
Poor 'live like animals' says Boris's privately educated sister after going on 'poverty safari'
White people become less racist just by moving to more diverse areas, study finds
Exclusive: Impact of immigrants on British workers ‘negligible’
- 1 International Women's Day 2014: The shocking statistics that show why it is still so important
- 2 Orgasm machine to deliver climax at the push of a button
- 3 Dear 'The Sun', breast cancer isn't sexy
- 4 Singapore sting: Sky-high prices are pushing locals to the edge of affordability
- 5 Liam Neeson turned down James Bond role because late wife Natasha Richardson said she wouldn't marry him if he took it
Competitive: Nielsen: We are seeking an enthusiastic intern with a passionate ...
£35000 - £45000 per annum: Charter Selection: Charter Selection are currently ...
Plus benefits: Sherrards Solicitors LLP: Sherrards is an equal opportunities e...