Hal Needham dies

Legendary stuntman also found fame as a director.

by Jennie Kermode

Hal Needham, one of Hollywood's greatest stuntmen, has died at the age of 82. The director of several hit films including Smokey And The Bandit and Cannonball Run, he was also an inventor whose creations, designed to make more daring stunts possible, went on to be used more widely and save lives.

Needham's life was never short of action. He served as a paratrooper during the Korean War before going on to train with film industry great Chuck Roberson and set up his own company, Stunts Unlimited. His work can be seen in over 300 films and he worked up to the age of 63. The exceptional skill and daring that he brought to the industry was recognised with a special award from the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences. He is survived by his son, David Needham, who works in props and set design.

Share this with others on...
News

The Two Faces Of January New York première On the red carpet with Hossein Amini, Kirsten Dunst, Emma Ostilly and Eamonn Bowles.

Season of mists Markus Blunder on working with Sophie Lowe and Maximilian Harnisch in Autumn Blood.

Making Tracks John Curran on working with Mia Wasikowska, dogs and camels in Tracks.

Top 10 Scottish films As Scotland chooses its future, we look back at some of its best moments in cinema.

Chris Fujiwara quits Edinburgh International Film Festival Artistic director steps down to pursue other activities.

More news and features

We're bringing you news and reviews direct from the San Sebastian Film Festival, which opens with The Equalizer.



We've got a lot of exciting coverage coming up, including the Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival, GrimmFest, the London Film Festival and the New York Film Festival.



We still have reviews coming in from the Deauville Festival of American Cinema and Frightfest.



Read our full for other recent coverage.


Visit our festivals section.

Interact

Win a copy of The Hypnotist and some terrific A Walk Among The Tombstones merchandise in our latest .