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©Mike Hopkins / AP
© Mike Hopkins / AP
Oscar-winning sound editor Mike Hopkins dies


Oscar-winning sound editor Mike Hopkins has died after a boating accident in New Zealand. He was 53. Hopkins drowned after the raft that he and his friends were on in the Waiohine River, in the Wellington region, capsized on Sunday.

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His body was found by a helicopter rescue team. His two companions, a man and a woman, were rescued. Police Senior Sgt. Carolyn Watson tells TVNZ, "All three were wearing life jackets, wetsuits and helmets at the time. We would like to thank all those who assisted in the recovery of Mr. Hopkins and the rescue of his companions, particularly the jet boat operator who came to our aid and, at considerable risk to himself, was able to rescue the female. Our thoughts are with the family at this difficult time."

Hopkins had a close working relationship with Peter Jackson, first teaming up with the director as sound designer for the 1992 horror-comedy "Braindead." He also joined Jackson for 2002's "The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers" and 2005's "King Kong," and he picked up Academy Awards for Sound Editing along with Ethan Van der Ryn for the films.

Hopkins was nominated for an Oscar for his work on the first "Transformers" movie, as well as five British Academy of Film and Television Arts awards during his career. His other film credits include "Public Enemies," "Valkyrie," "Kung Fu Panda" and "Dreamgirls."

Jan 2, 2013 9:19AM
That is terrible news.  His friends are probably very sad at the loss of such a good friend right now and the world is a lot sadder without such an awesome sound effects person.  He very much deserved his Oscar.
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