Breaking: Director Tony Scott dead of apparent suicide

Tony Scott, English director of Top Gun, True Romance, Crimson Tide, and about a million other things, the younger brother of Ridley Scott, apparently committed suicide Sunday by jumping off the Vincent Thomas Bridge in Long Beach. Pictured above with his wife, Donna, who once played a fembot in Austin Powers – they have two kids – Scott couldn’t have been planning this long, considering he had no less than twenty-nine in-development credits on IMDB.

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.

Cargo vessels moved at slow speeds through the east side of the Main Channel during the search, said Los Angeles Fire Department spokesman Brian Humphrey.

“It’s a dolorous task and we’re working to treat the deceased with the utmost dignity and respect,” Humphrey said.

Authorities used sonar equipment to track the man in the port’s murky waters and his body was recovered by a dive team around 4:30 p.m., Alva said. Scott’s body was taken to a dock in Wilmington and turned over to the county coroner.

Erected in 1963, the 6,060-foot bridge links San Pedro with Terminal Island and rises 185 feet at its highest point above the Main Channel of Los Angeles Harbor. Many have taken their lives by jumping from the span. [DailyBreeze]

Yikes. A lesser showman might’ve left his car running in the garage (well, not a Prius) or taken too many pills. I don’t know if he was depressed about getting old or infirm, but still being able to climb fences at 68 seems pretty good to me. If I had to pick my favorite Tony Scott movie, it’s probably between Crimson Tide and The Last Boy Scout. But it’s crappy news any way you cut it, and it’s probably going to be a long time before any “missile the size of the Chrysler Building” jokes are funny again. This is a “bummer the size of the Chrysler Building,” maybe? I’m sorry, I’m terrible at this. This is really crappy.

Apparently Scott had scouted the bridge as a location for a Warriors remake he wanted to produce, he talked about it in an MTV interview in 2005.

More news as it comes. This definitely isn’t helping refute those star wackers theories.

Picture credit: Helga Esteb /