WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND (AP) - Oscar-winning sound editor Mike Hopkins, who worked on the “Lord of the Rings” trilogy and other Peter Jackson films, has died in a rafting accident in New Zealand. He was 53.
A native New Zealander, Hopkins shared Oscars with sound editing partner Ethan Van der Ryn in 2006 for “King Kong” and in 2003 for “The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers.” They also were nominated for 2007’s “Transformers.”
The Herald reported a family celebration of Hopkins‘ life was planned on Thursday.
A river contractor, Bruce Slater, and his son used a jet boat to rescue Hopkins‘ wife. Nicci Hopkins had been in the Waiohine River two hours and was clinging to a ledge in a narrow part of the gorge too dangerous for bigger boats or a helicopter.
“If they’d been half an hour earlier, they would have been clear of the gorge,” he said. And a half hour later, the water levels would have been noticeably dangerous before the rafters launched, Slater said.
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