Obit of the Day: David Lean’s “Mr. Fixit”
While recovering from a leg wound, Eddie Fowlie wondered what he was to do after his World War II service. A fellow soldier in his ward recommended the film industry. Fowlie found his way in and truly enoyed himself.
His major breakthrough came while working with famed director Sir David Lean on Bridge Over the River Kwai, where Fowlie ensured that the titular bridge exploded…and that he drove the train that crashed into the river. Fowlie and Lean developed a close relationship and worked together on Lawrence of Arabia (Fowlie converted a Spanish town into an Arabian seaport) and Doctor Zhivago (Fowlie once again transformed the Spanish countryside, this time into an ice castle, using white marble dust). (Image uncited, but film was MGM studios.)
Fpwlie was known for doing whatever was necessary to fulfill a director’s vision, whether it was doing stunts that stuntmen wouldn’t or serving as a body double for Joan Collins - in a bikini!