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Tony Scott ‘resolute,’ ‘determined’ in bridge jump, witness says

August 21, 2012 |  2:49 pm

More photos: Director Tony Scott dead at 68
A Rancho Palos Verdes man who was driving across the Vincent Thomas Bridge just before Tony Scott jumped to his death said the director appeared "determined" and "resolute."

Eric Brill, 59, told The Times he was returning home after visiting his mother in Laguna Woods when he spotted a man wearing multicolored clothing climbing one of the cables on the other side of the bridge. The man was "clambering up in a very strong way," Brill said, something that confused him until he read later that Scott was an avid rock climber.

"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. "I looked more closely — perhaps it's a maintenance man. But I knew very soon after that it wasn't anyone doing maintenance."

FULL COVERAGE: Director Tony Scott | 1944-2012

As Brill was about to drive past Scott, he said, the director "turned around, as if to see if someone was after him."

"I could very, very clearly see his face," Brill said. "He was very determined. He was not crying, he didn't look upset, he didn't look sad. He just looked very resolute."

Brill said that he has read accounts from witnesses describing him as nervous and fidgety.

"I didn't see that," Brill continued. "What I saw was a very determined guy."

Brill pulled to the side of the road as soon as he crossed the bridge to call 911, he said. By the time he stopped, Scott was gone.

Authorities said they have not determined what drove Scott to jump.

Law enforcement sources said that several notes Scott left do not speak of any health problems or offer solid clues as to his motive. It's possible, the source said, that authorities might never make a clear determination of motive.

An autopsy was performed Monday. But the coroner said it would not have a final cause of death until toxicology and other tests results are available in several weeks.

Officials have not determined whether Scott had any health problems before he jumped off the San Pedro bridge but said family members have denied media reports that he was suffering from cancer.

"The family told us it is incorrect that he has inoperable brain cancer," said Craig Harvey of the coroner's office.


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Photo: Director Tony Scott died after jumping off the Vincent Thomas Bridge in San Pedro on Sunday. Credit: Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times