It starred Denzel Washington and Chris Pine. It would be Scott’s last work. He took his own life two days ago. Jumped off a bridge in California. He had a terrible illness that he would not survive, so he decided to end it all, an action director to the very end.
We also lost Phyllis Diller who died in her sleep at age 95 – a life well lived.
Tony and his brother Ridley, may have been the two best action directors of our time. Tony had monster hits like Top Gun, Beverly Hills Cop ll, Crimson Tide, True Romance, Man On Fire and Enemy of The State.
I always enjoyed watching True Romance, one of my favorite thrillers, an underrated picture that launched the career of James Gandolfini, best known as Tony Soprano of the HBO smash hit THE SOPRANOS.
It’s getting a little closer to home for us Baby Boomers. All of our entertainment heroes are checking out. I still have a hard time thinking about Paul Newman and Jack Lemmon being gone.
I met Lemmon a few times in LA and he seemed to be a fun-loving and kind man. I was at a Beverly Hills restaurant, midday standing at the bar reading a script I was working on and Jack Lemmon was next to me. We were the only ones in the room. I pulled out a cigarette, had no lighter, checked my pockets and Mister Lemmon leaned in and lit my Marlboro (you could smoke in restaurants in the 80’s).
He asked what I was working on and we spoke. He gave me some advice and well, I was so flattered that he gave me his time. A legend helping a 27 year old newbie in Hollywood.
It stays with you.
When we see these household names die, it is a constant reminder of how short and precious our lives truly are. A reminder to try to enjoy each day and not get so down on ourselves for not always reaching our goals.
Nobody does it all.
I look at these two very different stars and see their careers and lives reduced to a few articles online or in the papers and a mention or two on talk shows….then poof, they’re gone. And sadly pretty much forgotten. All that hard work, the rare people who made it big…bigger than life itself at times. Even these giant’s time comes to a sad end with death.
We’re all on that same bus.
I used to think their body of work would live long after they were gone…the Cagney‘s, the Edward G.Robinson‘s, the Clark Gable‘s, the Paul Newman‘s – but now I’m not so sure. Most young people have never heard of any of these famous stars.
People under 30 don’t know their movies, which only play on TMC (thank you Ted Turner).
Yes, some of the not too old ones land on HBO or CINEMAX sometimes, but less and less.
So in time they may totally vanish. Kinda like trying to catch a radio station that plays THE BYRDS or old DAVE CLARK FIVE. Or even THE BEATLES.
They’re all gone and on the way to being forgotten.
We live in the time it’s only hot for a few days.
The fame game is just for the moment and doesn’t usually last long anymore. Not too many careers will end up as long or as successful as people like Tony Scott or Phyllis Diller.
We have entered the era of button pushing, iPhones, meaningless nonsense on websites, text your ass off, no live calls and people are more and more reduced to being in a cube working on that next APP.
The adventure of life is now smaller and harder to find.
The computer generation has taken it all away.
“You’re just getting old and don’t get it Craig. Computers are wonderful.”
As for me, well, I’m glad I lived in the 60’s, 70’s, 80’s and 90’s. That seems like the best of this past century. Seeing these accomplished men and women pass reminds me of that.
I was lucky to have lived in a time when adventure was still available. I’m sure it’s still out there, just harder and harder to find.
Tony and Phyllis you will both now join that growing list of true Hollywood Icons who are no more.
I for one will miss you all.