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Safety is a primary concern on any film set, but that concern becomes even more pronounced when a film involves stunts and underwater camerawork. That description very much encompasses what The Meg is all about, and it sounds like things got a little dicey for one of the film's actors during a particularly intense sequence. Specifically, The Meg star Li Bingbing recently opened up about filming the movie and explained that she thought she was going to drown while shooting a shark cage sequence. The actress explained:
One of my scenes required me to be put in a cage five or six meters underwater, and I had to hold my breath for a very long time. We had to reshoot the scene again and again and I felt like I was going to die. When they took me out of the water, the director came to compliment me, but I was too weak to speak, then he started to fear that I was really close to death.
We've known for a while that The Meg is planning to include a sequence in which a character goes underwater in a shark cage, thanks to footage the flick has previously revealed. That's been a staple of the horror subgenre ever since Jaws debuted back in the 1970s. However, this shark cage scene was particularly intense for Li Bingbing, and according to the actress' remarks during a recent press conference in Shanghai (via Stuff), the filming process kept her underwater for so long (and for so many different takes) that she actually thought that she was going to die when director Jon Turteltaub asked her to go down for one more take.
Of course, it's worth noting that Li Bingbing is no stranger to the world of action and stunt work. The 45-year-old Chinese actress is a veteran of the genre, with credits in films like Transformers: Age of Extinction, Resident Evil: Retribution, and X-Men: Days of Future Past. She knows her way around onscreen action, but the experience of filming that underwater sequence in The Meg was still a reasonably harrowing experience for her.
The Meg focuses its story on a group of scientists who uncover a massive, prehistoric megalodon in the waters off the coast of China. As the beast leaves an enormous body count in its wake, they recruit a wisecracking veteran diver (Jason Statham) to hunt it down and kill it. In addition to Li Bingbing and Statham, the film also features Ruby Rose, Rainn Wilson, and Cliff Curtis (among others) on its supporting cast.
Audiences will get a chance to see that stunt sequence and much, much more when The Meg premieres in theaters later this summer on August 10. Until then, make sure to swim over to our 2018 movie premiere guide to get all of this year's biggest and best release dates, and fill out your moviegoing calendars accordingly!