How One Under The Dome Star Nearly Died On Set

Now airing its third season on CBS, Under the Dome has seen plenty of characters die off of the science fiction-based series. However, while it’s not unexpected for characters to get killed off on TV, it is very unexpected to hear that a lead actor nearly ended up dying on the set. On Thursday, Under the Dome actor Mike Vogel, who plays the handsome Barbie on the summer drama, revealed that there was a practical effects problem that lead to a pretty harrowing experience on set this season.

During the filming of Season 3, the show was filming the cocoon scene that sort of helped Under the Dome to reset during the premiere. The team created real cocoons for the scene that Under the Dome cast member Colin Ford call the experience cold. Vogel says he was just hanging out in his cocoon to film the big scene when it starting having technical difficulties related to the dry ice that was pumping through the cool-looking TV prop. According to the actor:

We were pumping dry ice…one second I was breathing and another second I had no oxygen left. I had to punch my way out and I ruined my cocoon in the process.

It’s a story that Vogel, who plays the very popular Barbie on the summer CBS drama, tells fairly lightly, but safety is generally paramount on TV and movie sets. So for the loss of oxygen within a prop to occur is pretty serious. Luckily, Vogel ended up being totally fine and can joke about the near-death experience now, as can producer Tim Schlaffman, who kidded about how the team almost broke the cardinal rule of TV production—not killing the lead actors on set.

Actors can occasionally be injured on set—Johnny Depp suffered a notorious injury on the set of Pirates of the Caribbean 5 recently—but luckily, in Vogel’s case all is well that ends well.

In fact, it’s a really good thing that the cocoon episode was able to be filmed with no further major problems. We’re about to get into minor spoilers, so if you haven’t caught Under The Dome this season yet, head out now. When Season 3 picked up, the first episode proved to be a big fakeout, during which it seemed everything was back to normal following the events that occurred prior. However, Melanie was just keeping everyone inside giant cocoons under the city, which allowed the characters to live in non-reality. (Yes, it’s all very complex.) Eventually, the cocooned townspeople were found and let out, leading to one of the grossest and gooiest sequences in the show’s history.

The messy stuff related to the cocoons likely led to Vogel’s problems while filming. While it took a while to set up each cocoon during the filming, it all ended up looking like a pretty cool effect. So, I guess that’s probably worth a near-death moment. Totally.

You can catch Under The Dome Season 3 when it airs on Thursdays at 10 p.m. ET, only on CBS. You can also check out what else the network has coming up, here.

Jessica Rawden
Managing Editor

Jessica Rawden is Managing Editor at CinemaBlend. She’s been kicking out news stories since 2007 and joined the full-time staff in 2014. She oversees news content, hiring and training for the site, and her areas of expertise include theme parks, rom-coms, Hallmark (particularly Christmas movie season), reality TV, celebrity interviews and primetime. She loves a good animated movie. Jessica has a Masters in Library Science degree from Indiana University, and used to be found behind a reference desk most definitely not shushing people. She now uses those skills in researching and tracking down information in very different ways.