On Sunday, beloved TV and film actor R. Lee Ermey passed away from complications with pneumonia. Ermey was 74.
Ermey’s most famous role came in 1987 when Ermey effortlessly stole the show as a tough-as-nails drill sergeant in Stanley Kubrick’s Full Metal Jacket. Initially, Ermey was supposed to lend his real-life expertise as a Marine drill instructor as a technical advisor. However, after Kubrick saw Ermey improvise a string of insults on nearby extras, the acclaimed director was convinced he’d found the man for the role.
On the set of Full Metal Jacket, Kubrick displayed such faith in Ermey’s on-screen ability that he allowed the actor to improvise on camera and re-write his dialogue as he saw fit. This kind of creative freedom was unheard of from Kubrick, a director with a notorious reputation for maintaining strict control of his production.
Following Full Metal Jacket, R. Lee Ermey forged a distinguished career in a variety of roles. He helped form the backbone of such hard-hitting dramas as Mississippi Burning and Seven, but he also proved himself up for a joke time and again. His turns in Saving Silverman, The Watch and The Frighteners were particularly standout. When not appearing in films, Ermey grabbed laughs on the small screen with parts in The Simpsons, Family Guy, and Scrubs.
Statement from R. Lee Ermey's long time manager, Bill Rogin:
It is with deep sadness that I regret to inform you all that R. Lee Ermey ("The Gunny") passed away this morning from complications of pneumonia. He will be greatly missed by all of us.
Semper Fi, Gunny. Godspeed. pic.twitter.com/vf4O78JKmb
— R. Lee Ermey (@RLeeErmey) April 15, 2018
Though Ermey was known for his rough onscreen persona, off-screen the Marine was known for being sweet and generous in every respect. He was an active spokesperson for the Young Marines Youth Organization and a relentless advocate for law enforcement.
More in News
Demi Lovato Remains in the Hospital After Overdosing Last Week
Demi Lovato is still in the hospital following an overdose that took place last week. The star is still expected to...July 31, 2018
Madonna Launches a Malawi Fundraiser to Celebrate 60th Birthday
Madonna is launching a fundraiser for Malawi in celebration of her 60th birthday. The fundraiser will be held online in partnership...July 31, 2018
Kesha Documentary Heading to Apple Music
A Kesha documentary will soon be released on Apple music. The project is entitled Rainbow – The Film, and will provide...July 30, 2018
Justin Bieber Hints that a Wedding is Just Around the Corner
Justin Bieber has hinted that his wedding to Hailey Baldwin is just around the corner. A paparazzi recently asked the singer...July 30, 2018
The ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ Cast Stands Up for Their Embattled Director
It’s been more than a week since news broke that Disney had axed James Gunn for a series of tweets he...July 30, 2018
Netflix Announces Four More Original TV Shows
Netflix has announced that they will be adding four more original TV shows. One of the new shows is called Madam...July 30, 2018