John Cornell

John Cornell (2 March 1941 – 23 July 2021) was an Australian actor, director, producer, writer, and businessman who was born in Kalgoorlie, Western Australia. He was best known for his role as "Strop" on The Paul Hogan Show, and he was instrumental in the introduction of World Series Cricket in 1977.[1]

John Cornell
Born(1941-03-02)2 March 1941
Kalgoorlie, Western Australia, Australia
Died23 July 2021(2021-07-23) (aged 80)
Byron Bay, New South Wales, Australia
Occupation
  • Film producer
  • film director
  • writer
  • actor
  • businessman
Years active1971−1995
Spouse(s)Delvene Delaney (m. 1977)
ChildrenAllira and Liana (with Delaney); Melissa (previous marriage)

Early lifeEdit

Cornell was born in Kalgoorlie, Western Australia,[2] on 2 March 1941.[3] He was raised in Bunbury.[4] He stated that he was considered a "ratbag"[a] at school, but he topped the class in both English and Economics at Bunbury High. Although he contemplated a career in pharmacy, it was his interest in journalism that saw him gain a cadetship at the Daily News in Perth.[2]

CareerEdit

As a journalist, Cornell reported on local events in Perth for The Daily News (a publication of West Australian Newspapers),[4][2] becoming editor of that paper at 26 years of age.[5]

In 1971, while working as a producer for the television show A Current Affair, Cornell recognised the talents of a Sydney Harbour Bridge rigger, Paul Hogan (who had been the subject of an interview by the station).[4] Cornell became Hogan's manager[6] and often appeared alongside him in his popular television show, The Paul Hogan Show, as a character called "Strop"[7] (a dim-witted dinkum Australian surf lifesaver). He produced and co-wrote the screenplay for Hogan's 1986 film Crocodile Dundee[4] which became the highest grossing Australian film.[8] He also produced and directed the successful 1988 sequel, Crocodile Dundee II.[4]

Cornell worked closely with Kerry Packer and Austin Robertson in setting up World Series Cricket (WSC) in 1977.[9] Based on a suggestion in 1976 by Dennis Lillee (whom Cornell was managing at the time), Cornell presented the idea to Kerry Packer—primarily with the aim of providing better financial rewards to the players.[10][11] Cornell was actively involved in the recruitment of players for WSC, for example travelling to New Zealand to sign players (including Doug Walters).[12] Cornell engaged the Mojo agency to produce radio and television advertisements to promote WSC—including the production of the jingle "C'mon Aussie C'mon".[4][13]

Personal lifeEdit

Cornell married Australian actress and television personality Delvene Delaney in 1977,[2][7] and they had two children: Allira and Liana.[14][15] He was married twice before, and had a daughter from one of those marriages (Melissa, born in 1970).[2]

FinancesEdit

Cornell built the Byron Beach Hotel (Byron Bay) for $9 million in 1990.[16][17][18][19][20][21][22][23] In 2007, it was sold by Cornell to a consortium of businessmen led by Max Twigg (a Melbourne businessman and racing car driver), with varying reports on the sale price, e.g. either $44 million[24][25][26][27][28][20][21] or a record $65 million.[17][19][29] In 2017, Max Twigg later resold the propoerty to the Liberman-family backed Impact Investment Group (IIG), a Melbourne-based firm that is a joint venture between the Liberman and van Haandel families, in an off-market deal brokered by CBRE Hotels's Wayne Bunz and Daniel Dragicevich for $70 million[21][18][28][26][25][27][22] (below the initial $75-$80 million sales price ancipated in July 2016[20][23][19]). Dragicevich stated that “There are very few landmark beachside freehold hotels like this in Australia, both in terms of scale and location."[18] In November 2019, the Byron Beach Hotel was sold for a record $100 million to Moelis Australia Hotel Management[25][27] It was described at the time by the buyer (Dan Brady, CEO of Moelis Australia Hotel Management) as an "“Iconic Australian establishment located on irreplaceable real estate.”.[16] The hotel is known as "Top Pub" to locals. Melbourne restaurateurs and hospitality figures John and Lisa van Haandel have operated the hotel since 2007, with John van Handel still holding the original 10-year lease (ending mid-2017) which had two additional 10-year options.[18][19][20][26][25][23]

Cornell and Paul Hogan were investigated for alleged tax evasion as part of the Australian Taxation Office's (ATO) Project Wickenby which commenced in 2004.[30][31] They were also investigated by the Australian Crime Commission "over the use of offshore accounts to bank royalties from the Crocodile Dundee films" (with both denying any dishonest conduct). They were later cleared of any wrongdoing by the Australian Crime Commission (ACC).[32] In 2012, Hogan and Cornell confirmed that they had settled the eight-year dispute with the ATO.[6]

DeathEdit

Cornell suffered from Parkinson's disease and had undergone deep brain stimulation to alleviate the symptoms.[7] The disease had rendered Cornell largely immobile;[7] however, treatment by Peter Silburn at St Andrew's War Memorial Hospital in Brisbane enabled him to "enjoy 2 km walks with his wife".[33]

Cornell died on 23 July 2021 at his home at Byron Bay. He was 80, and suffered from complications related to Parkinson's disease.[34][35]

FilmographyEdit

Cornell was involved in various roles in the following projects:

Awards and nominationsEdit

Year Award Category Work Subject Result Ref.
1987 Academy Awards Best Screen Play Crocodile Dundee Nominated John Cornell, Ken Shadie, and Paul Hogan [39][40]

Explanatory notesEdit

  1. ^ "Ratbag" is an Australian slang term for a non-conformist, a mischievous troublemaker, a scoundrel, a rascal or a lovable scallywag. The term can be used in a non-offensive way (as is the case in this article), or it may be used more pejoratively, as someone thoroughly disapproved of: a villain, a crook, a disreputable person.

ReferencesEdit

CitationsEdit

  1. ^ "John Cornell, key figure behind World Series Cricket, dies aged 80". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 23 July 2021.
  2. ^ a b c d e Woodhouse, Ursula (20 April 1986). "A very rich ratbag". The Sun-Herald. Fairfax Media. p. 172. Retrieved 23 August 2012.
  3. ^ "'Classic Australian character': TV and film icon John 'Strop' Cornell dies aged 80". Nine News. 23 July 2021. Retrieved 23 July 2021.
  4. ^ a b c d e f Guilliatt, Richard (21 August 1988). "AUSTRALIAN DEALMAKER: John Cornell; The Man Who Sold Hollywood on 'Crocodile Dundee'". The New York Times. Retrieved 23 August 2012.
  5. ^ Connell, Cecilia (22 July 2021). "Comedian John 'Strop' Cornell dies aged 80 after long battle with Parkinson's disease". ABC News. Archived from the original on 23 July 2021. Retrieved 23 July 2021.
  6. ^ a b "Paul Hogan's tax probe cost $20 million". news.com.au. News Corporation. 1 May 2012. Retrieved 23 August 2012.
  7. ^ a b c d Sharp, Annette (16 April 2010). "Radical treatment for Parkinson's has transformed John 'Strop' Cornell". Herald Sun. News Corporation. Retrieved 15 April 2010.
  8. ^ "Australian Content Box Office – Top 100 All Time". screenaustralia.gov.au. 1 January 2012. Archived from the original on 4 September 2012. Retrieved 23 August 2012.
  9. ^ Hogan, Jesse (18 August 2012). "When cricketers saw the light". The Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 23 August 2012.
  10. ^ Gupta, Varun (18 April 2008). "Twenty20 can affect ODIs, not Tests: Lillee". Hindustan Times. HT Media Ltd. Archived from the original on 28 March 2015. Retrieved 24 August 2012 – via HighBeam.
  11. ^ Lillee 2003, p. 128.
  12. ^ Lillee 2003, p. 129.
  13. ^ Lillee 2003, p. 138.
  14. ^ McClymont, Kate (9 April 2011). "Ruling revives Tax Office pursuit of Hogan". The Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 23 August 2012.
  15. ^ Waterhouse, Kate (18 January 2012). "Liana's Bard Girl". The Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 23 August 2012.
  16. ^ a b Craze, Kirsten (18 November 2019). "Byron Bay Beach Hotel: Australian pub record smashed with $100m sale". Daily Telegraph. Archived from the original on 24 July 2021. Retrieved 24 July 2021 – via Realestate.com.au.
  17. ^ a b Housten, Carolen (23 April 2007). "Byron Bay Beach Hotel sold for $70 million". Sydney Morning Herald. Archived from the original on 24 July 2021.
  18. ^ a b c d "Byron Bay Beach Hotel sold for $70 million". Hotel Conversation. 19 September 2017. Archived from the original on 24 July 2021. Retrieved 24 July 2021.
  19. ^ a b c d "Owner puts Byron Bay's Beach Hotel back on the market for $75 million". Hotel Management. 26 April 2017. Archived from the original on 24 July 2021. Retrieved 24 July 2021.
  20. ^ a b c d Schlesinger, Larry (13 June 2016). "Byron Bay's Beach Hotel hits the market with $80m price tag". Australian Financial Review. Archived from the original on 24 July 2021. Retrieved 24 July 2021.
  21. ^ a b c Schlesinger, Larry (18 September 2017). "Liberman's Impact snaps up Byron Bay Beach Hotel for $70m". Australian Financial Review. Archived from the original on 24 July 2021. Retrieved 24 July 2021.
  22. ^ a b Boucher, Dinah Lewis (19 September 2019). "Byron Bay 'Beachie' Hotel Hits the Market for $100m". Urban Developer. Archived from the original on 24 July 2021. Retrieved 24 July 2021.
  23. ^ a b c Allen, Lisa (24 April 2017). "Byron Bay's Beach Hotel price cut to $75m". Comercial News. Archived from the original on 24 July 2021. Retrieved 24 July 2021.
  24. ^ Lehmann, Megan. "Genius, visionary and very bloody funny: John 'Strop' Cornell, TV icon and Kerry Packer cricket rebel, dead at 80". The Australian. Retrieved 24 July 2021.
  25. ^ a b c d Cummins, Carolyn (29 November 2019). "The 'Beachie' of Byron Bay: the story behind Australia's $100 million pub". Sydney Morning Herald. Archived from the original on 24 July 2021. Retrieved 24 July 2021.
  26. ^ a b c Cummins, Carolyn (19 September 2017). "Byron Bay's Beach Hotel sells for $70 million". Sydney Morning Herald. Archived from the original on 24 July 2021. Retrieved 24 July 2021.
  27. ^ a b c Berisa, Amy (18 November 2019). "Byron Bay pub sells for record-breaking $100 million". Boutique Hotel News. Archived from the original on 24 July 2021. Retrieved 24 July 2021.
  28. ^ a b "Byron Bay Beach Hotel Replaces Poker-Machines with Eco-Friendly Environment". Australian Leisure Management. 21 December 2018. Archived from the original on 24 July 2021. Retrieved 24 July 2021.
  29. ^ Craze, Kirsten (9 February 2010). "The Mayne Report Rich List". The Mayne Report. Archived from the original on 24 July 2021. Retrieved 24 July 2021.
  30. ^ Moran, Susannah (19 January 2010). "Paul Hogan and John Cornell face final tax bills". The Australian. News Corporation. Retrieved 14 September 2010.
  31. ^ "Project Wickenby – Overview". Australian Taxation Office. 11 May 2012. Archived from the original on 10 July 2012. Retrieved 23 August 2012.
  32. ^ Houston, Cameron (23 April 2007). "Byron Bay's Beach Hotel gets $65m". The Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 30 January 2010.
  33. ^ Sharp, Annette (16 April 2010). "A Parkinson's 'miracle' for John Cornell, television's 'Strop'". The Daily Telegraph. News Corporation. Retrieved 23 August 2012.
  34. ^ "Australian icon John Cornell has died". The Age. Retrieved 22 July 2021.
  35. ^ Webster, Andrew (22 July 2021). "'A classic Australian character': John 'Strop' Cornell dies at 80". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 22 July 2021.
  36. ^ a b c "John Cornell". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 22 July 2021.
  37. ^ "Paul Hogan back with Nine". The Age. Melbourne. 5 September 1974. Retrieved 22 July 2021.
  38. ^ Aveyard, Karina; Moran, Albert; Vieth, Errol (26 December 2017). Historical Dictionary of Australian and New Zealand Cinema. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 72. ISBN 978-1-5381-1127-7.
  39. ^ Evans, Greg (23 July 2021). "John Cornell Dies: 'Crocodile Dundee' Oscar-Nominated Screenwriter, Paul Hogan Collaborator Was 80". Deadline. Archived from the original on 25 July 2021. Retrieved 25 July 2021.
  40. ^ Barns, Mike (23 July 2021). "John Cornell, Paul Hogan Collaborator and Oscar-Nominated 'Crocodile Dundee' Screenwriter, Dies at 80". Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on 25 July 2021. Retrieved 25 July 2021.

General sourcesEdit

  • Lillee, Dennis (2003). Lillee: An Autobiography (1st ed.). London: Headline. ISBN 0-7553-1231-7.

External linksEdit