Published: Mon, April 16, 2018
Culture&Arts | By Laurence Reese

Actor, US Marine R. Lee Ermey has died, manager says

Actor, US Marine R. Lee Ermey has died, manager says

Erney was brought on board by director Stanley Kubrick as a consultant for "Full Metal Jacket" to train the actor who would portray the role of a drill sergeant, but Kubrick put Erney in front of the camera instead.

Ermey served in Marine Wing Support Group 17 at Marine Corps Air Station Futenma in Okinawa, Japan, and in 1968, he was ordered to Vietnam where he spent 14 months.

Actor R. Lee Ermey, best known for his role as a tough drill instructor in "Full Metal Jacket" has died at age 74, his manager announced Sunday.

"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", his manager, Bill Rogin, posted on Facebook.

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Ronald Lee Ermey died Sunday morning of complications from pneumonia, according to his publicist. It's said that Ermey wrote much of his characters extensive speeches, in which he goaded the troops-in particular Vincent D'Onofrio's dimwitted Private "Gomer Pyle" Lawrence.

Ermey played the role of Sarge in Toy Story from 1995 through to Toy Story 3 in 2010.

The part he would become most well-known for, in "Full Metal Jacket", wasn't even originally his.

Kubrick later estimated that the actor wrote around half of his entire dialogue through ad libbing.

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'In the course of hiring the marine recruits, we interviewed hundreds of guys. He was also a drill instructor for the Marines. "I think we can't just ignore terrorism, we cant just turn our back on it and expect it to go away".

The role made an impression on viewers, which earned him a Golden Globe nomination and paved way for more film opportunities.

He went on to appear in a number of other memorable films, among them "Mississippi Burning" (1988), "Toy Soldiers" (1991), "Sommersby" (1993), "Se7en" (1995), and "Leaving Las Vegas" (1995). These include Lock N' Load with R. Lee Ermey, where he talked about the development of the different types of weapons, and the History Channel show Mail Call, in which he provided his knowledge about modern and historic military issues.

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