R. Lee Ermey, a Golden Globe-nominated actor best known for his role as Gunnery Sgt. Hartman in Stanley Kubrick's Full Metal Jacket, has died.
Ermey, whose nickname was "The Gunny," died Sunday morning from complications of pneumonia. He was 74.
The news was announced via his official twitter account by his longtime manager, Bill Rogin.
Ermey not only played a member of the military in the movies, but he also was one in real life, having been a U.S. Marine Corps staff sergeant and an honorary gunnery sergeant. He also served as a drill instructor for the Marines. Ermey also served 14 months in Vietnam and completed two tours in Okinawa, Japan.
Both March 24, 1944, in Emporia, Kan., Ermey's family moved to Toppenish, Wash., when he was 14. There, he became a "troublemaker and a bit of a hell-raiser," he told the Civilian Marksmanship Program's online magazine in September 2010, and he found himself in court multiple times.
"Basically, a silver-haired judge, a kindly old judge, looked down at me and said, ‘This is the second time I've seen you up here and it looks like we're going to have to do something about this," he told CMP. "He gave me a choice. He said I could either go into the military — any branch I wanted to go to — or he was going to send me where the sun never shines. And I love sunshine, I don't know about you."
it was his role role in Kubrick's 1987 film Full Metal Jacket that brought him also earned him a best supporting actor award from the Boston Society of Film Critics. However, he's probably best remembered for the numerous memorable lines he delivered as the no-nonsense seargeant: including: "What is your major malfunction numbnuts? Didn't mommy and daddy show you enough attention when you were a child?" and "I want that head so sanitary and squared away that the Virgin Mary herself would be proud to go in there and take a dump."
But he has said he's not really like that character. “I’m basically a nice person,” he told the Spokesman Review in 2010.
Other films credits include Mississippi Burning, Prefontaine, the remake of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Fletch Lives, Frighteners and Se7en. He also had a healthy voice-over career, playing the lead of the green plastic Army solders in the Toy Story films along with a role in SpongeBob SquarePants, among others.
Credit Hollywood Reporter for article