Here at Scream Magazine we’re partial to Jaws, but this is the kind of news we hate to report. It is with great sadness and a heavy heart that we say Tom Joyner, first A.D. on Jaws passed away aged 79.
Although passing on February 22 after a long battle with heart disease and cancer, Joyner’s death was not announced until March 14 following his inclusion in the 2023 Oscars “In Memoriam” segment.
Aside from his work on Spielberg’s Jaws, Tom was a prolific assistant director and production manager throughout the 70s and 80s. Joyner’s credits saw him serving as a second assistant director on Clint Eastwood’s High Plains Drifter and Steven Spielberg’s Sugarland Express.
As a Unit Production Manager, Joyner lent his skills to projects such as 1980’s The Blue’s Brothers, John Carpenter’s Starman and the 1973 Bette Davis vehicle Scream, Pretty Peggy.
Although not a packed career, Joyner certainly had a hand in some legendary projects and worked with quite the number of well-known individuals. Between projects Joyner sat on various boards for multiple branches of the Director’s Guild of America between 1984 and 2012.
For his services to the Guild, Tom was awarded the Frank Capra Award in 1999. He is survived by his wife Laura and their two children.
Rest easy, Tom.