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Ryan Reynolds’ Tribute to Stuntwoman Who Died on ‘Deadpool 2’ Set

Sad news from the set of one of my most anticipated films of next year as one of the stunt performers for Deadpool 2 died in an on-set accident. The performer, Joi Harris, was the first African-American woman to compete in professional road motorcycle races in the United States. Deadpool 2 was the first film she had worked in as a stunt performer.

Star Ryan Reynolds made a comment via Twitter, and the incident was confirmed by ACTRA, the Canadian actor’s union, as the film is in production in Vancouver.

Harris, a Brooklyn native, was performing as a stunt double for Zazie Beetz who is playing the probability-manipulating hero Domino in the film, who we got our first look at two weeks ago, again courtesy of Ryan Reynolds on Twitter.

According to Deadline, the accident occurred when Harris lost control of her motorcycle and crashed through a plate-glass window. Harris had apparently practiced the stunt all day Saturday and Sunday, and had run it several times Monday before filming.

But Deadline also reported that the crew for film had complained about the production schedule, working weekends and enduring multiple sixteen hour shooting days, though the studio disputed those claims. WorkSafeBC is investigating the cause of the accident and the conditions on the set.

This accident comes less than a month after the death of John Bernecker on the set of hit comic book adaptation The Walking Dead.  And Brandon Lee, the son of martial arts legend Bruce Lee, was also killed on the set of a comic book adaptation when a prop gun malfunctioned on the set of The Crow in 1993. I don’t have any special insight into how these sorts of accidents happen or how they could be avoided, but if nothing else it highlights the amount of hard work and risk these mostly unappreciated and nameless stunt performers take on to bring us the movies and TV shows we love. We should at least give these performers the recognition they deserve while they’re still with us.

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