You can be injured on the job in any profession. While workplace injuries are typically associated with construction sites, film and TV actors are no stranger to near-death experiences. Our personal injury lawyers took a look at five filming accidents that nearly took the life of one of their stars.
Halle Berry’s Slip and Fall Accident
Halle Berry suffered a head injury in 2012 while filming her movie, “The Call.” The Oscar winner was filming a fight scene when she tripped and hit her head on concrete—knocking her unconscious. Berry was rushed to the hospital, but recovered quickly. In a 2013 interview, the actress said she was back on the set the following morning. Traumatic brain injury can be particularly devastating. We hope Berry was given the green light by a doctor before returning to work.
The Brady Bunch Roller Coaster Incident
In the Brady Bunch episode, “The Cincinnati Kids,” the script called for the Brady family to ride on a rollercoaster. To film the faces of the cast, a cameraman was to sit in the front car and ride backwards with the mounted camera.
Sherwood Schwartz, producer of the Brady Bunch and lover of roller coasters, admitted in his book that he wanted to take the opportunity to ride the roller coaster first, “to see what it would be like for the cast.”
While on his test ride, he noticed a sign warning passengers to stay seated during the ride. Schwartz grew concerned that the camera mount was about as tall as a standing person, so he ordered a second test run with only the camera on board. Sure enough, the coaster returned without the camera.
Had the camera hit a barrier or flown off with people on board, a cast member or the camera man could have been severely injured or killed. The filmmakers used a spare camera with a much shorter camera mount to ensure the safety of their cast and crew.
Gilligan’s Island Animal Attack
Bob Denver, the star of “Gilligan’s Island” was nearly mauled by a lion while filming a scene. The script called for Denver to barricade himself in Mr. and Mrs. Howell’s hut, unaware that the lion was already inside. As the script called for the actor to not look at the lion, it wasn’t until the animal roared that Denver realized he was actually ready to attack. The lion jumped off a set of twin beds, which slid under his weight, giving the trainer enough time to tackle the lion. Denver insists this is what spared him from injury or even death.
Isla Fisher Nearly Drowns in Stunt
In a 2013 interview with Chelsea Lately, actress Isla Fisher revealed that a stunt in “Now You See Me” nearly cost the actress her life. The scene actually called for Fisher’s character, a magician, to nearly drown while chained underwater. The chain actually got stuck, and when Fisher began to struggle, the cast and crew assumed she was simply doing a phenomenal job at acting out the scene.
Thanks to a quick-release switch at the bottom of the tank, Fisher managed to escape with her life. The actress re-shot the scene, though admitted she was hesitant to get back in the water.
Chevy Chase Electrocuted During Dream Sequence
In the 1981 film, “Modern Problems,” actor Chevy Chase was nearly killed in an electrical accident. The scene, a sequence in which Chase’s character was dreaming of being an airplane, called for landing lights to be attached to the actor’s body. The lights short circuited, and arced through Chase’s arm, back, and neck muscles. The actor lost consciousness, but fortunately survived the accident.
The near-death experience caused Chevy Chase to experience a period of depression—something that is not uncommon among survivors of near-fatal accidents.