Tony Scott, famed for directing Tom Cruise in Top Gun and Days of Thunder - and being the younger sibling of Ridley Scott, reportedly "jumped without hesitation" from a bridge in L.A.'s San Pedro, around midday yesterday.

The Telegraph reports: "The 68 year-old, originally from North Shields, North Tyneside, died after he plunged almost 200 feet from the Vincent Thomas Bridge, at lunchtime on Sunday. Witnesses reported seeing the father-of-two calmly parking his black Toyota Prius near the bridge, climb a 10 foot fence on the south side of its apex and leap off 'without hesitation' just after 12:30p.m local time…" His body was found three hours later in the water.

The report adds: "The US Coast Guard said officials found a note listing contact information inside his car, which was parked on an eastbound lane of the cable-suspension bridge. A suicide note was later found at the downtown Los Angeles office of the Hollywood legend."

"I can confirm that Tony Scott has passed away. The family asks that their privacy is respected at this time," Scott's spokesman, Simon Halls, said in a statement.

Scott also counts films such as Enemy of the State, Beverly Hills Cop II, Man On Fire and Crimson Tide among his impressive directorial repertoire.

Scott was married to Donna Scott, who had starred alongside Cruise in Days of Thunder. They had twin boys, Frank and Max. The family live in Beverly Hills, about 30 miles north from Long Island and the Vincent Thomas bridge.

Since news of his death spread yesterday, the following tweets have been posted:

Robert Rodriguez: "Damn. Great knowing you, buddy. Thanks for the inspiration, advice, encouragement, and the decades of great entertainment."

Stephen Fry: "Deeply saddened to hear the news about Tony Scott. A fine film-maker and the most charming, modest man."

Ron Howard: "No more Tony Scott movies. Tragic day."

Elijah Wood: "Awful news about Tony Scott. Rest in peace."

Morgan Spurlock: "We are absolutely devastated by the passing of director Tony Scott. He will be truly missed."

Duncan Jones (AKA David Bowie's son and director of Moon and Source Code): "Just heard about Tony Scott news. Horrible... Tony was a truly lovely man who took me under his wing & ignited my passion to make films... Awww Tony. Wish you had felt there was a way to keep going. What a sad waste. My thoughts go out to his wife and beautiful children."

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