UK & World News
Lord Of The Rings Oscar-Winner Hopkins Drowns
Sound editor Mike Hopkins, who has won two Oscars for his work on blockbuster films, has drowned in a rafting accident.
Hopkins, a 53-year-old New Zealander, died after being thrown into a fast-flowing stretch of river in the remote Tararua Ranges on North Island on Saturday.
A police spokeswoman said his two rafting companions - who have not been named - both survived.
All three were wearing life jackets, wetsuits and helmets, said Senior Sergeant Carolyn Watson.
According to TVNZ, one woman on board managed to make it to safety, while the other was rescued by a jet boat.
The police praised the rescue effort.
"We would like to thank all those who assisted in the recovery of Mr Hopkins and the rescue of his companions," said Sgt Watson.
"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 won Oscars for his work on The Lord Of The Rings: The Two Towers in 2003 and King Kong in 2006 while working with American Ethan Van der Ryn.
He also worked on several other notable movies including Blade Runner, Superman, The Last Emperor and Octopussy.