The young man stood on the edge of the rail, the sparkling waters of Sydney Harbor dancing beneath him
With the famous Harbor Bridge arch above as a witness, he stepped into the void just as a man reached out to grab the back of his shirt
« Let me go, » he said to the man, hugging the thin piece of cloth, « I just wanna go »
And for about 20 minutes, Hogan, then a rigger on the bridge, risked his own life to save someone else’s.
The never-before-told story of how Hogan – the pre-TV celebrity and Crocodile Dundee – prevented what would have been another suicide off the landmark, is told in the pages of Hogan’s soon-to-be released autobiography The Tap Dancing Knife Thrower – My Life Without The Boring
As Hoges recalls in the book, the young man, a struggling 20-year-old college student, had asked him to take his hand during their conversation, meaning that at any point their two lives could have ended.
« What happened was a bit of a blur, but we talked and he ended up getting off the bridge with me, » says Hogan, now 80.
“I remember, as we were walking down the ark, he grabbed my shoulder and said, ‘You shouldn’t have done that (took his hand)’ he said, ‘I could have taken you on the ledge with me ‘ »
Hoges also reveals in his book that he received a bravery award for saving the young man’s life, but says he should instead have received an award for being « fearless and stupid »
Frankly as always, Hogan says that bravery is something people do when they’re afraid, but still do the right thing, but his own actions that day were not born out of such lofty ideals.
« I was never afraid, » he writes, « the Harbor Bridge was my home. It never occurred to me that I could fall 400 feet when I died »
In all, Hoges would spend around 10 years climbing the Coathanger, before fame – and eventually fortune – brought him back to earth.
The story of how Hogan became a star after appearing on the TV variety show New Faces before being spotted and then directed by his best friend John Cornell is also told in the book Without Cornell, happily admits. Hogan, « I would have stayed on this bridge forever »
Instead, Hogan became a star in his early thirties, and was 46 when he played the man in the black hat, Mick “Crocodile” Dundee.
On the Evenin ‘Viewers podcast, celebrating the release of his autobiography, Hogan says he’s « very grateful » that fame didn’t come to him, too soon or too quickly.
“These kids today who are famous all over the world at 19, well, they can’t help but think that they are something special or different from other people because they don’t have never experienced anything else We kind of won our way so we appreciate it You can’t be selfish, you can’t think you deserve it, you can’t think you’re particularly talented
“But today a lot of people in the entertainment industry think they unfortunately deserve it, especially those who aren’t as talented – the real housewives of Rooty Hill or the Big Brother competitors. think it’s something special, and it’s quite funny »
The success of Crocodile Dundee – still the most successful independent film in history, made for just $ 8 million and grossing $ 328 million – didn’t take Hogan entirely by surprise
“We knew it would do well in Australia, and we had an idea it would do well in America.” The reason for the idea is told in a hilarious account by Hogan, his then partner Linda Kozlowski, Dundee director Peter Faiman and his wife Jenny, sneaking into Los Angeles movie theaters the night of the Crocodile Dundee premiere in 1986
« We were driving in a stretched limo and pulling over to various cinemas, all crowded, getting out of the car in the middle of the movie and asking the bailiff if we could just stay in the back, » Faiman recalls on Evenin ‘ Viewers
“They would be like ‘Well who are you?’, And I would say ‘Well this is Paul Hogan’,” laughs Faiman, adding that what they heard from the back of that dark cinema was the sound of a howling laughter
« That’s when we knew, » Hogan said, « the Yanks had it, and we got a hit on our hands. »
Hogan’s newfound international fame also earned him the role of co-host at the 1987 Oscars where he charmed audiences with his improvised, unscripted commentary.
« They couldn’t believe I didn’t use a teleprompter, » Hogan chuckles on the phone from Los Angeles, adding that he almost lost the gig.
“They were about to cancel me, the director and the stage manager had a seizure when I said I hadn’t used a script, but the producer of that show that year was Samuel Goldwyn Junior. and when he found out that I had no script he said to them, ‘No, no, leave him alone, it’s Hoe-gers (Goldwyn Jr mispronounced the Australian nickname), let him go , this is his thing, it will be funny, the hoe-gers will make him funny » »
Hoges – or Hoe-gers laughs, and footage from that particular Oscar night shows Goldwyn Junior was right – Hogan was funny, casually strolling around the stage as if he were just walking to a buddy’s house or a barbecue
As Hollywood bigwigs like Dustin Hoffman watch him, Hogan – also nominated – tells them, « I traveled 13,000 miles to be here tonight, and frankly if I don’t win it won’t be pretty. »
While Dundee was making her a star, America had already fallen a little in love with Hogan as the Australian larrikin who invited them to « Come say g’day, I’ll slip another shrimp on the barbie for you »
America’s tourism campaign, You Need a Holiday, led by Hoges, has been one of the most successful in history.The impact of advertising has lifted Australia from 78th to seventh place as most popular vacation destination for Americans But for Hoges, it wasn’t rocket science. « It’s not a hard sell in Australia, is it? » « But until then, there were only koalas and kangaroos in all the commercials you’ve seen. I remember thinking, surely we can do better than that – we’re not a bloody zoo »
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Annastacia Palaszczuk and Deb Frecklington will face off as they answer questions from undecided voters at this afternoon’s People’s Forum
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Sunshine Coast Lightning has announced an exciting new signing to next year’s roster that is sure to give opposition shooters a lot of headaches
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