'Full Metal Jacket' actor R. Lee Ermey dies at age 74
R. Lee Ermey, a former Marine Corps drill instructor known to millions of moviegoers as the sadistic Gunnery Sgt. Hartman in Stanley Kubrick's "Full Metal Jacket," died Sunday morning, according to his longtime manager. He was 74.
By Samuel Chamberlain
(FOX NEWS) -- R. Lee Ermey, a former Marine Corps drill instructor known to millions of moviegoers as the sadistic Gunnery Sgt. Hartman in Stanley Kubrick's "Full Metal Jacket," died Sunday morning, according to his longtime manager. He was 74.
In a statement posted on Twitter, Bill Rogin said Ermey had died due to complications from pneumonia.
"He will be greatly missed by all of us," Rogin wrote. "Semper Fi, Gunny. Godspeed."
A Kansas native, Ermey enlisted in the Marine Corps and age 17 and spent 14 months in Vietnam before he was discharged in 1972. He served as a technical advisor in Francis Ford Coppola's Vietnam War epic, "Apocalypse Now," in which he also had a small role as a helicopter pilot.
But Ermey didn't get his big break until nine years later, in Kubrick's own take on Vietnam.
An outspoken conservative, Ermey spoke to Fox News in 2016 about being "blackballed" from Hollywood over his political views.
"I've had a very fruitful career. I've done over 70 feature films," he said. "I've done over 200 episodes of ['GunnyTime']... and then [Hollywood] found out that I'm a Conservative."
Actually, he corrected, "I'm an Independent, but I said something bad about the president. I had something unsavory to say about the president's administration, and even though I did vote for him the first time around, I was blackballed."
Ermey, who was an NRA board member, said at the time that his association with the organization and his disapproval of President Obama cost him acting jobs.
"Do you realize I have not done a movie in five to six years? Why? Because I was totally blackballed by the ... liberals in Hollywood," he alleged. "They can destroy you. They're hateful people [who] don't just not like you, they want to take away your livelihood ... that's why I live up in the desert on a dirt road ... I don't have to put up with their crap."
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