Filmmaking can become an incredibly risky endeavor at times, and as much as we like to focus on the fun and games of it all, sometimes people die in the process of filming. That's what happened on the set of American Made when Alan Purwin and Carlos Berl were killed, and Jimmy Lee Garland was injured, in a plane crash, thus raising questions about the safety precautions taken during shooting. However, according to American Made star Sarah Wright Olsen, the crew placed a serious premium on safety precautions during her time on the set. Olsen explained:
In the whirlwind discussion about safety on the set of American Made, Sarah Wright Olsen's recent comments to People about her time on the set of the film paints a picture of professionalism and concern for safety. Amid the finger-pointing in the wake of the crash that killed Alan Purwin and Carlos Berl, Olsen (who plays Cruise's wife Lucy, but was not on-set during the accident) has come out in support of Tom Cruise's own familiarity and skill with planes, as well as the thoroughness of the crew.
This plane crash has spurred a massive legal battle that has certainly started to grab headlines. Just last week it was revealed that producers of American Made are pursuing legal action against the aviation company responsible for providing the planes used in the production. Per the legal complaint, the folks behind American Made have made the claim that S&S Aviation did not properly maintain the aircraft that crashed, and did not inform the pilots of essential information about the plane prior to takeoff.
However, a certain amount of blame has also been leveled at the production itself. The families of Alan Purwin and Carlos Berl have reportedly come forward and admitted that the two deceased crew members complained about the strenuous (and arguably unsafe) working conditions of the film before the crash. Tom Cruise and director Doug Liman have not been officially blamed for any wrongdoing in any legal context, but members of the Purwin and Berl estate have cited them in their legal complaints towards the production because of frequent changes and additional flying sequences added to the shoot.
For a film like American Made, shooting in an airplane was pretty much unavoidable. Based on a true story, the film tells the tale of Barry Seal -- a pilot who goes to work for the CIA as a drug-smuggler in the 1980s. Aerial sequences were fundamental to the production of the film, but we will have to wait and see how these legal proceedings progress as they move forward.
American Made will debut in theaters later this month on September 29. From there, Tom Cruise and Doug Liman will then go on to team up again with Live Die Repeat and Repeat. Until we learn more about that upcoming Edge of Tomorrow sequel, check out our 2017 movie premiere guide and our 2018 movie premiere guide to see all of the upcoming films that Hollywood has in store over the next year.
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Originally from Connecticut, Conner grew up in San Diego and graduated from Chapman University in 2014. He now lives in Los Angeles working in and around the entertainment industry and can mostly be found binging horror movies and chugging coffee.