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A witness to Tony Scott’s fatal jump Sunday said the British film director appeared “determined” just before he leapt from the Vincent Thomas Bridge in San Pedro, Calif.
Eric Brill, a 59-year-old man from Rancho Palos Verdes, told the Los Angeles Times that he was driving across the bridge when he noticed a man climbing up the bridge cables.
“It takes a while to register in your brain, because you’re not used to seeing anything like this and for a few seconds you think it’s some kind of mistake,” Brill said, adding that he first thought Scott might have been a maintenance worker.
Scott, the director of movies including Top Gun and Beverly Hills Cop II, turned around “as if to see if someone was after him,” just before Brill drove past, giving him a clear look at the director’s face.
“He was very determined,” Brill said. “He was not crying, he didn’t look upset, he didn’t look sad. He just looked very resolute.”
His account varies from that of another witness, David Silva, who told the Times on Monday that Scott looked “nervous.”
“He was on the roadway close to the fence looking around,” Silva said. “He was looking around and fumbling with something at his feet.”
Said Brill, who pulled over to call 911: “I didn’t see that. What I saw was a very determined guy.”
Scott’s body was found around 4:30 p.m. Sunday.
L.A. County chief coroner investigator Craig Harvey on Monday said Scott’s family disputed an ABC News report that he had inoperable brain cancer at the time of his death.
“According to family spokespersons, the information concerning brain cancer or an inoperable brain tumor in Mr. Scott is incorrect,” he told People.
An autopsy was performed Monday, but results aren’t expected for several weeks. Notes that Scott left behind reportedly do not mention health problems or a possible motivation.
Scott was seven years younger than brother Ridley Scott, his partner in Scott Free Productions; the Scott brothers produced this year’s Prometheus, which was directed by Ridley and has so far grossed $330 million worldwide.
The Scott brothers also co-produced the CBS series Numbers, which aired from 2005-10, and served as executive producers on another CBS drama, The Good Wife.
Scott’s other directing credits include Days of Thunder, True Romance, Enemy of the State, The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3 and Unstoppable.