Tony Scott Obituary

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R.I.P. Tony Scott: 1944- 2012

By Dustin Rowles | Miscellaneous | August 20, 2012 | Comments ()


Update: According to ABC News, Tony Scott had inoperable brain cancer.

We can never truly understand what drives a person to take his own life, and sadly, those who successfully commit suicide are never left behind to explain why. Suicide letters may provide reasons, but they never truly capture the truth. Today, director Tony Scott jumped off the Vincent Thomas Bridge in Long Beach, took his own life, and will leave his family asking too many whys to reconcile with the suicide note he left in his car.

From The Daily Breeze (via FD):

Scott, 68, climbed a fence on the south side of the bridge's apex and leapt off "without hesitation" around 12:30 p.m., according to the Coroner's Department and port police.

A suicide note was found inside Scott's black Toyota Prius, which was parked on one of the eastbound lanes of the bridge, said U.S. Coast Guard Lt. Jennifer Osburn.

Officers with port police, the Los Angeles Police Department and California Highway Patrol joined city firefighters and the Coast Guard in searching the water for his body.

Tony Scott, the brother of Ridley Scott, was the director of Top Gun, Crimson Tide, The Last Boy Scout and about every third Denzel Washington movie. He was often criticized for his bombastic style and quick editing, but the man could make a hell of an entertaining film, including one of my favorites, True Romance.

The British director was 68. He leaves behind his wife, Donna, and a thousand questions that will never be answered with the satisfaction they deserve.

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Comments Are Welcome, Bigots and Trolls Are Not

  • I'd like to think that if I had inoperable brain cancer I'd do the same thing. Scott's actions have made me think about it - I've always supported euthanasia but this has highlighted the issue of how you explain your decision to friends and family.
    The problem with open communication is that someone might decide they know better and stop you from doing it. Why some people think its better to endure a long lingering painful death I don't know...

  • Jeremy Carrier

    After seeing my Grandfather struggle, suffer, and then die from brain cancer over the course of nearly six months I figure suicide is the better option. There's really no good answer out of this, so going out on your own terms...I understand that shit. Just wish it was in a less public manner.

  • terribleerror

    Editor: Ridley Scott does not have cancer.

  • John G.

    People never seem to understand suicide, as though life must always go on and on and on. He lived 68 years. He had brain cancer. He jumped with no hesitation. He went out on his own terms.

  • vaskark

    Update line should say Tony, not Ridley.
    Awful news. Could barely believe it last night when I heard. RIP.

  • logan

    What a shame because if that big MILF, in the pic, is his wife he had at least two big things to live for.

  • Stunned. He was in the middle of a project with Ridley.


  • Yossarian

    The man was 68 years old and, from what I've read, nothing about a history of depression is mentioned. Is it strange that I view his death differently given this context? It just doesn't seem like a rash decision based on a depressive cycle. It feels unseemly to speculate on the possibility of terminal illness or other drastic circumstances but is it possible for someone approaching the end of their life to make a lucid and informed decision to go out on their own terms? Hunter Thompson was the same age when he committed suicide and as much as I miss him I don't view his death as tragic. Both of them did great things in life, which is worth celebrating, and both made decisions about when and how to exit.

    I feel for his friends and family and I hope he found some way to give them peace before he did this but as an outsider and a fan, after the initial shock, I don't really feel like mourning. Just... thanks, Tony. For defining coolness when I was a little kid with Top Gun and for re-defining coolness when I was a teenager with True Romance.

  • Snath

    Today is definitely not White Boy Day.

  • kirbyjay

    When the dark heavy depression blankets you, the thought of not having to deal with anything you can't manage to deal with is overpowering. People who've never had it will never understand real depression, they say "just try to snap out of it," like that's even possible. The brain is an organ, like the liver or heart or pancreas, and is afflicted with maladies just like other organs, so you wouldn't tell a cancer patient to snap out of it, Unfortunately, medical research has not perfected the exact science of anti-depressants. I feel very lucky that a mental health professional diagnosed me correctly. Thirteen years ago I was knocking on that same suicidal door, suffering from depression and extreme anxiety, probably weeks away from the same fate of Tony Scott, but miraculously I was prescribed meds that worked within a week and saved my life. I guess he was not so lucky.
    RIP Tony Scott...I've felt your pain

  • mswas

    @02d9c957cf7df2881512b7ad4d1e546e:disqus so glad you were able to get the right diagnosis and help

  • kirbyjay

    Thanks Mswas
    Well, poor Tony Scott jumped off a bridge and I jumped to conclusions. He was not depressed so I'm glad for him for that anyway. At least he won't wither away from a hellish disease so family, friends and fans can be thankful for that.

  • Rochelle

    I don't know what drove Tony Scott to take his own life. I do know that if he suffered from depression or other mental illness, his suicidal impulse was a symptom - the way a tumor is a symptom of cancer. Unlike other illnesses, there are a lot of barriers to treating mental illness - the biggest one being that the illness is in your brain and it protects itself by resisting your natural inclination to fix what's wrong. Depression alters your perception of reality. Suicide goes from being a crazy idea to the only viable alternative - one that will leave everyone better off. But really - it's a symptom, not a choice.

  • NoPantsMcLane

    Such tragic news. He was one of my personal favorite directors. He always made such dumb but fun movies. R.I.P. Tony.

  • RandyPan

    He didn't always make the perfect film, but he rarely ever made a boring one. True Romance still kicks a meaty mound of derrière and may no fucker reborquel it. RIP troubled soul

  • Nadine

    Jesus. RIP Tony, I hope you found what ever peace you sought.

  • POINGjam

    If it's what he wanted, good for him. Nobody's obligated to wait for the world to decide how it wants to kill you.

  • hapl0

    My heart goes out to his loved ones.

    So if I'm reading this right, it's ok to commit suicide if you're an atheist?

  • BendinIntheWind

    WTF does atheism have to do with anything?

  • hapl0

    TF it has to do comes from the fact that only an infidel would talk about suicide in such a nonchalant manner.

  • BWeaves

    I think you're reading it wrong. God or religion was not mentioned.

    I think this is very sad, and I feel for Tony Scott's family.

    However, when the time comes for me, I'd like to know that I have the option to control my own time of death if I want to.

  • hapl0

    I'm sorry but there's pulling the plug and then there's everything else.

  • David Sorenson

    If that's what you honestly think, you need to get slapped. Often.

  • POINGjam

    You're a butt.

  • David Sorenson

    If that's a polite way of saying I'm a horse's ass, you're about right. Hadn't seen that Tony Scott had had terminal brain cancer and thought your comment was some sort of emo bullshit. I was wrong to assume that it was and I apologize for suggesting you be slapped often.

    While I personally think he could've found a much better way of dealing with it, I had a friend die of brain cancer (and another more recently of throat cancer) and can understand why he'd want to go out any other way.

  • POINGjam

    I didn't see the brain cancer thing either, but I did see that he was an adult. I believe that suicide is a valid choice for adults. It's sad, and it's often a rash decision, but (speaking from personal experience) the loud and proud stigma attached to suicide significantly adds to the feelings of guilt and isolation that come with suicidal thoughts. You don't want to make a suicidal person feel more lonely and ashamed than they already do.

    And you're not a butt.

  • David Sorenson

    See that's my problem. Suicide is like a big old dirty bomb. It doesn't just end your problems. It spreads them to everyone else. I've had some downright dark fucking days myself where suicide seemed a reasonable option, but then I remembered that I've got a kid that I don't want to mess up and friends that I'd rather not hurt.

    And it does hurt them, I've known a few people who've had friends or relatives commit suicide. You can't talk about the person around them. They don't want to talk about them either. Even the good times seem weird. Tainted. I know a guy who had his twin brother (who was schizophrenic) walk out in the front yard of his family home with a gun and kill himself. Can't describe him without the word "haunted." The parents are a bit better, but they're scarred too.

    Suicide (with the exception of terminally ill people) isn't an adult decision. It's a selfish one. Lashing out at everyone and not sticking around to see how much damage you've caused.

  • POINGjam

    It's selfish, sure, but how is that not adult? We make selfish decisions all the time that we feel are valid. Selfishness is prioritizing your interests over those of others. It's not bad, it's subjective.

  • David Sorenson

    No. It's bad. Selfish and subjective is eating the last donut at work. Generally speaking suicide hurts people far more than it helps you and the people it hurts are the people who care about you the most. That's bad.

  • Rochelle

    As someone with a failed suicide attempt in my past, I can assure you that my decision to commit suicide was not selfish - it was an illness. Therapy and medication helped me realize that the impulse came from the disease in my brain not the pain of my life. When you're brain chemistry gets out of whack - reality becomes distorted. Selfishness and selflessness become switched. Suicide does spread the pain to the survivors, but it usually isn't an intentional infliction of harm.

  • POINGjam

    Been there myself, know what you mean, I'm just saying that suicide is a selfish act in that it hurts other people (even if it doesn't feel selfish in the moment). Doesn't make it wrong, that's up to the individual to decide.

    Life is awful for some people. It's nobody's place to decide what is and isn't a tolerable level of suffering for others. Judging depressives for suicidal behavior is like condemning starving people for stealing food.

  • dahlia6

    Poor guy. Its awful when you feel there's no way out, no hope, and nothing left to do about it. A friend of my mother's recently ended his life, and most no one even knew he'd been contemplating it. It could be a myriad of things, illness either mental or physical, depression, crushing debt, or a billion other things. Its so awful that people feel this is truly their only path. I have nothing to add but my sincere condolences to his family, who have to put things back together after this. Poor guy. Poor everyone.

  • Justin Kuhn

    What the fuck, Tony Scott?

  • zeke_the_pig

    Holy shit.

  • Magiel


  • junierizzle

    R.I.P. One of my all time favorite directors. I actually cross that bridge for work almost every day. I didn't cross it today but I was in the vicinty around that time. Just sad.

    I don't know how he did it but no one shot a better close-up then Tony Scott.

    My thoughts and prayers go to the family.

  • Brown

    This reminds me of how I don't own True Romance despite it being one of my favorite films. Floyd was our unofficial 5th roommate back in college.

  • Marc Belanger

    Vaya con Dios, Tony... May you find the peace out there that you could not over here...

  • The Wanderer

    Requiescat in pace.
    Actor William Windom also died recently, of congestive heart failure.

  • Jeremy Carrier

    He also had two sons

    RIP, Tony Scott. Last Boy Scout and True Romance will ALWAYS be awesome

  • Fredo


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