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60 year-old director David R.Ellis found dead in South Africa

posted 8 Jan 2013, 09:30 by Sam Mbale   [ updated 8 Jan 2013, 09:30 ]

60-year-old director and former stuntman David R. Ellis has died.

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIAUNITED STATES (REUTERS) -  Snakes On a Plane director and former stuntman David R. Ellis was found dead in the bathroom of the Sandton Sun Hotel hotel in Johannesburg in South Africa on Monday (January 7).

According to reports the 60-year-old was working in the area on a new film called 'Kite' with Samuel L. Jackson.

The news was confirmed by the film-maker's manager.

An autopsy has been conducted but details on the cause of death are yet to be released by authorities.

Ellis was last seen on Saturday (January 5).

Taking to Twitter to voice his shock at the news, Samuel L. Jackson tweeted: 'So talented, so kind, such a Good Friend. He'll be missed. Gone too soon!'

Jackson starred in Ellis' cult 2006 movie 'Snakes On a Plane'.

Speaking at the time at the film's LA premiere Ellis was pleased with how the film developed:

"What we did is they allowed me to take the film from a PG 13 film to a R rated film which is what whatSamuel L. Jackson) and I really wanted and we felt "Snakes on a Plane" we had to go for it. We added more radical dialogue, a lot more radical action, and snake deaths, and a little bit more nudity, and some great language from Sam."

The US Embassy in South Africa has been informed of the director's death and arrangements are being made to have Ellis' body repatriated back to America.