Being a stunt performer is a notoriously dangerous job. But a slew of onset accidents in the recent months have proven how potentially deadly the career can be. The latest of these tragedies happened just this week, as a stuntwoman on Deadpool 2 passed away after an accident. Joi Harris was doing her first stunt for Zazie Beetz' Domino when the incident occurred, and details about the tragedy have just become public. According to a report by British Columbia's WorkSafeBC, the accident went as follows:
The worker had been rehearsing a stunt scene that involved driving a motorcycle, Ducate 939 Hyperstrada, out of the open doors of a building, across a concrete pad and down a ramp that had been built over three stairs and coming to a stop on the stair landing. During the first shooting of the scene the stunt driver continued driving beyond the planned stopping spot on the stairway landing, and continued to drive down a second ramp built over the bottom stairs and across the roadway. The motorcycle struck the concrete sidewalk curb, the worker was thrown off the motorcycle and propelled through a plate glass window of a building.
It looks like the stunt wasn't especially dangerous for Joi Harris, which makes her sudden loss even more tragic. It was simply a terrible accident, and happened to occur during Harris' first major stunt on the sequel.
After Joi Harris passed away due to her injuries, some critics questioned whether or not she was prepared and qualified enough for the position. But WorkSafeBC's report, which comes to us from Deadline, refutes this. While she wasn't a heavily tenured stunt woman, she was indeed an experienced motorcyclist. The report says:
To say an unqualified person was put in this position is absolutely untrue. She was the best candidate for the job.
While the tragedy on Deadpool 2's set has been felt across the film community, it's not the first accident to befall a major set in recent memory. Just a few weeks ago a stuntman working on AMC's The Walking Dead fell to his death while filming. The show paused production for a few days, but it back on track at the moment. Additionally, a crew member working on the final Resident Evil movie died last year after a tragic accident.
And most recently Tom Cruise seriously injured himself working on a stunt for the next Mission Impossible movie. These types of incidents will no doubt affect the way stunts are handled in the future, and will perhaps encourage directors to utilize more heavily on CGI to avoid possible injuries.
Deadpool 2 will arrive in theaters on June 1, 2018, and will hopefully contain a tribute to the late Joi Harris.