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In 1987, a foul-mouthed gunnery sergeant stole the screen in Stanley Kubrick’s Oscar-nominated film “Full Metal Jacket.”
“Full Metal Jacket” details the hardships of a U.S. Marine during the Vietnam War as he moves through basic training and into the actual war.
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The film begins with an immediate introduction to Gunnery Sgt. Hartman, played by R. Lee Ermey.
Ermey was a bit of an unknown at the time of filming. Kubrick had called him in to be a technical advisor on “Full Metal Jacket,” but Ermey had other intentions when he accepted.
“I accepted the job as technical advisor simply to get my foot in the door so that I could score the role of Gunnery Sgt. Hartman,” Ermey said in a 2009 interview with DoD News. “They had already hired another actor to play Gunnery Sgt. Hartman, but Marines don’t just say ‘Oh’ and give up. We continue to march and we attack until we achieve our goal and we accomplish our mission.”
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Fast forward 29 years later and Sgt. Hartman is considered one of the most iconic film characters of all-time, while R. Lee Ermey is a national icon in the firearms industry.
Scroll through the gallery above and read through the 10 best quotes from Gunnery Sgt. Hartman in “Full Metal Jacket” as we honor R. Lee Ermey on his 72nd birthday.
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