I’m disgusted to read that a stuntwoman’s death was entirely avoidable, if only the production company hadn’t been riddled with political correctness.
The death of stuntwoman Joi “SJ” Harris on the set of Deadpool 2 is tragic. It’s even more heartbreaking as we’ve learned that the that crew members on the set consider her death to have been preventable.
“She was improving, but I was watching her and, oh my God, I thought, ‘It’s just a matter of time before she crashes into a wall or runs somebody over,” a source tells The Hollywood Reporter. This source had been training Harris to perform the stunt, and noted that another member of the stunt staff had spoken to producers about their safety concerns. Harris had endured two previous crashes during the practice stunts.
. . .
It appears that the producers did not take the stunt team’s worries seriously, and were adamant that the stunt be performed by an Afrian-American woman in order to more closely resemble the character Domino, played by actress Zazie Beetz. Joi Harris had previously never performed motorcycle stunts on film, and was primarily a road racer. According to Deadline, Harris was not wearing a helmet during the take, because Domino wasn’t wearing one in the scene.
“The producers put pressure to have somebody of the same sex and ethnicity in a position she wasn’t qualified to be in,” stunt coordinator Conrad Palmisano told THR. “The stunt coordinators caved to the pressure.”
There’s more at the link.
In days past, before political correctness came to rule the entertainment industry so completely, it would have been common practice to have a stunt double wear makeup to simulate the correct skin shade, and perform like that. Apparently that wasn’t a sufficiently “authentic” solution for the production team in this case . . . so a less qualified, less competent stuntwoman was used – and she died for it.
One wonders whether a charge of (at least) manslaughter (or, to be politically correct, personslaughter) wouldn’t be appropriate.