Alec Baldwin killed one crew member and injured the director of his upcoming movie, Rust, during a prop gun accident; we have compiled a list of such incidents, including Bruce Lee’s son Brandon Lee and others.
We have fallen completely in love with movies without thinking about the struggle that the entertainers went through to make them. So, in this article, we will be learning about five fatal filming accidents that shook the entertainment world.
In all honesty, no one ever said the entertainment business is the safest work you could have; it was only assumed. But the truth is, it can – and has been – fatal at times, and not just for stunt people.
Here’s a look at 5 fatal filming accidents you should be aware of.
Rust – 2021
According to the press released by the Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office, which E! News obtained, Alec Baldwin fired a prop gun on his latest movie set, killing one crew member and injuring the director.
The director of photography, Halyna Hutchins, and the film’s director, Joel Souza, were shot when Baldwin “discharged” a prop firearm on the set of Rust on Thursday, 21 October 2021.
After the accident, Hutchins, 42, was taken by helicopter to the University of New Mexico Hospital. However, she didn’t survive the accident as she was pronounced dead when she arrived at the Hospital.
Meanwhile, an ambulance took Souza, 48, to Christus St. Vincent Regional Medical Center, where he is “undergoing treatment for his injuries. The Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office said it dispatched officers to the Bonanza Creek Ranch at about 1:50 p.m. after a 911 caller reported ‘shooting’ on set.
The Crow – 1993
Actor Brandon Lee — the son of martial arts legend Bruce Lee — got shot in the abdomen while filming a scene in March 1993 in Wilmington, North Carolina. He also didn’t survive the accident as he was pronounced dead almost immediately.
A co-worker created a makeshift bullet that was mistakenly left in a prop gun used to film a scene, and this led to the accident that killed Lee. The film already had been plagued by money and safety issues because a month before Lee’s accident, a construction worker was badly burned.
OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) fined the production company $84,000 for violations found after Lee’s death, but the penalty later was reduced to $55,000. After Lee’s death, there were changes to the rules of how firearms are treated on sets.
Twilight Zone: The Movie – 1982
On the set of Twilight Zone: The Movie in 1982, a helicopter crash killed actor Vic Morrow and two children. This is one of the fatal filming accidents that took place on the movie’s Santa Clarita set in California, and it shook the film industry and led to new safety standards in place for the use of choppers.
Morrow and the children were killed while filming a scene after debris from explosions rose 100 feet in the air and damaged the copter’s rotor.
The movie’s director, John Landis, and four others were acquitted of involuntary manslaughter charges in a rare prosecution targeting a film production for on-set deaths. The families of the child actors killed settled civil lawsuits years later.
Midnight Rider – 2014
In 2014, the assistant camera operator of Midnight Rider Sarah Jones was killed while filming a Gregg Allman biopic in rural Georgia, when she was hit by a train.
The production did not have permission to be on the train tracks, and prosecutors filed criminal charges against director Randall Miller, who pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter and criminal trespassing charges.
While Sarah Jones’ parents continued to wage a campaign to improve safety for set workers. Director Miller was released after serving half of a two-year sentence, and his company was contesting a $74,900 fine by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
However, Jones’ death sparked a heightened focus within the industry on film set safety.
Cover Up – 1984
The fatal filming accident that occurred on the set of Cover Up in 1984 was an extremely tragic one.
Actor Jon-Erik Hexum accidentally shot and killed himself with a gun that was supposed to be loaded with blanks. The 26-year-old actor had been filming a scene on the television show, where he played an undercover CIA agent posing as a male model.
There were delays to film the scene and Hexum grew increasingly frustrated and began playing with the gun, spinning the barrel like a game of Russian roulette.
He then playfully spun the barrel, which had one bullet inside, and placed the gun to the temple of his head, and pulled the trigger. The gun discharged a wad of paper which shattered his skull, forcing a bone fragment the size of a small coin into the center of his brain.
After losing several pints of blood on the way to the hospital, the actor underwent five hours of surgery and was placed on life-support machines. Six days later, Hexum was declared brain dead and his organs were harvested with permission of his devastated family.
The New Jersey-born star’s heart was transplanted into the chest of Michael Washington – a Vietnam war hero who also owned an infamous escort service known as Swinging Suzy’s in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Clearly, the Alec Baldwin prop gun accident is not an isolated incident.
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