Season 8 of The Walking Dead has been an interesting one. With All Out War against Negan declared, we've watched a capsulated season that took place over just a few days. The eighth season has been chock full of gunfights, with characters large and small falling during the course of the rebellion against The Saviors. And while Walking Dead fans may be mourning the fictional characters from the apocalyptic drama, a real life fatality occurred earlier this year when a stuntman took a massive fall onset. Now it appears his family is intending on suing the network in the wake of his untimely death.
Stuntman John Bernecker died on July 12nd, after succumbing to injuries sustaining during his fall on the set of The Walking Dead. He fell from a great height, and eventually died in the hospital at the age of 33. Now Bernecker's mother is reportedly taking legal action against TWD and AMC with a wrongful death lawsuit.
The case's details come to us from USA Today, which also reveal that John Bernecker's mother believe the set of The Walking Dead was ultimately an unsafe place due to the action taken by AMC. She claims the network "orchestrated and enforced a pattern of filming and producing The Walking Dead cheaply and, ultimately, unsafely." While the cast and crew of the series seems to have been appropriately shaken by John Bernecker's death, it seems now that his loved ones are also seeking financial restitution for the tragic accident.
John Bernecker's tragic death is just the latest in a line of highly publicized onset injuries/fatalities from the past few years. Deadpool 2 faced a similar incident months ago, as stuntwoman Joi "SJ" Harris died in a motorcycle accident while filming in Vancouver. Debate raged in the following months, regarding whether or not Harris' death could have been avoided. And while she wasn't an experienced stuntwoman in the world of film, she had a ton of biking experience and was therefore qualified to be attempting the shot that ultimately took her life.
Tom Cruise also recently suffered a horrifying stunt related injury, although he wasn't in any life threatening danger. Cruise famously does most of his own stunts, which is exactly who he injured himself on the set of the new Mission: Impossible movie. While trying to jump across rooftops, he missed the mark and broke his ankle in the process.
And far scarier than that was Dylan O'Brien's onset accident while filming Maze Runner: The Death Cure. He was accidentally run over while filming a particular action sequence, and very nearly died from his injuries. Luckily he was ultimately able to recover, and finish the upcoming sequel.
We'll just have to see how John Bernecker's mother's lawsuit pans out. And in the wake of these numerous onset accidents, perhaps safety should become an even bigger priority for TV and film studios.
The Walking Dead will return to AMC on February 25th, 2018. In the meantime, check out our midseason premiere list to plan your next binge watch, and our cancellation list to see if your favorite show got the chop last year.
Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his famous actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.
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