Jery Hewitt was a legendary stunt coordinator in Hollywood who worked on such productions as The Big Lebowski, New Amsterdam and Law & Order. He died at the age of 71 in November 2020 in New York, but his death was trending anew after the show New Amsterdam paid tribute to him in March 2021.
The title card for the New Amsterdam season 3 premiere honored Hewitt, saying, “In memory of Jery Hewitt and the lives we lost in 2020.”
That sent his name trending on Google as some fans wondered, Who was Jery Hewitt? He was known as “the thinking man’s stunt coordinator,” according to his obit.
What was his cause of death? He died of a “catastrophic stroke,” his family revealed, according to The Hollywood Reporter, which explained that Hewitt died in a New York hospital. His obituary reveals he died on November 23, 2020, in Warwick, New York.
According to his obituary,
Jery’s career in film and TV tallied thousands of credits over four decades. He was one of the most well respected stunt coordinators in the business and a true legend in the film community having collaborated with Oscar winning directors including Joel and Ethan Coen, Jodie Foster and Mike Nichols. He was once described as ‘the thinking man’s stunt coordinator,” maybe that’s why Dick Wolf trusted him to coordinate all 20 seasons of Law and Order and the 22 seasons thus far of Law and Order SVU.
Here’s what you need to know:
Hewitt Made Things Happen ‘in a Seamless & Magical Way,’ His Family Says
Hewitt’s family said in his obit: “He knew how to make things happen in a seamless and magical way. His laser-focused attention to detail ensured the safety of those he was working with and allowed the precision of the moment to be captured on film with clarity and the true beauty of the story he was helping to tell.”
His wife Jennifer Lamb is a stuntwoman. Together, they have four children. “Jery was born in Brooklyn on March 6, 1949 and lived in Queens until moving to Warwick 40 years ago. Jery was the son of the late Harry Jefferson Hewitt and Marjorie Potts Hewitt and step son of Vally Richter-Addo Hewitt. He is survived by his loving wife, Jennifer Lamb Hewitt, and their beautiful children, Harry, Kevin, Sam and Molly. He is also survived by his brother, Don Hewitt and his wife, Mary, as well as many nieces, nephews, close friends and extended family. He was predeceased by brothers, Steven and Peter,” his obituary says.
Hewitt Had a Collaboration with the Coen Brothers, Working on 14 of Their Films
Some of Hewitt’s best known collaborations came with the Coen Brothers. According to his obit, Hewitt worked on 14 of their movies.
He taught actor Tex Cobb to ride a motorcycle in “Raising Arizona,” according to his obit, and also worked on movies ranging from “The Bourne Ultimatum” to “Good Will Hunting.”
The family’s statement continued, “Jery was honored to have worked on 14 of the Coen Brothers films and his efforts brought iconic moments to life, from teaching Tex Cobb how to ride a motorcycle in Raising Arizona, to sending his wife and collaborator for the past 25+ years, Jennifer Lamb, hurtling backwards into a snake pit in the remake of True Grit.”
Hewitt worked on every season of Law & Order.
“Jery had many interests and gifts to share with the world. He spent several years involved with Civil War reenactments including restoring an authentic 1857 12-Pounder Napoleon Field Gun. He also became a skilled hot-air balloon pilot, a joyous past time he shared with his brother, Don,” the obituary read.
“In Jery’s crystal clear blue eyes everything on the planet had a purpose and function. He had a fascination with the inner workings of anything mechanical and enjoyed taking things apart and rebuilding them. His kids would often hear him say, ‘If it ain’t broke, fix it!’ Jery enjoyed collecting antique Divco milk trucks which he maintained in working order. His most recent passion, second only to adoring his ‘first wife, Jennifer,’ was restoring his 1975 Unimog. Jery was also a man of good humor. When he was able to name the small street to the house he built in the woods, he did so fittingly; it’s called ‘Soft Landings.'”