American Made: The True Life Story of Barry Seal
This is a sad story. A long article. Louisiana connections. Katrina shadows.
The only professional commentary I can give, is if you are a filmmaker, producer, director, etc., you have to realize even if you are doing a ‘no budget’ or ‘100-million-dollar budget’ film, you are responsible for the cast and crew talent’s safety. They are your family, even if for that moment in time.
Putting aside, for argument’s sake, the eventual outcome of this tragic case, while you cannot account for every possible safety consideration, due diligence is mandatory if you want to be a professional in this business.
“Fear the Walking Dead” stuntman dies in a simple stunt practice. How is that possible? I’ll hold my immediate opinion for later, but there’s enough blame to go around for me.
“Midnight Rider” camera assistant dies and several others permanently injured due to blatant disregard for safety of the cast and crew talent. And, not one person walked, save for the location manager, from this set. A set with immediate and present dangers to the cast and crew talent.
If you are an independent filmmaker, do not let the mention of international megastar Tom Cruise, or, the budget of the film fool you. People can be injured, or, forbid, killed on a small film, too.
SAFETY FIRST. Print this on every Call Sheet and document you publish to your production. Perform your due diligence. Hold safety meetings, even though some crew talent will scoff at you. Be safe.
It’s only a movie. No one is supposed to die.
Stanley B. Gill
Founder & Editor-in-Chief