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Author Topic: Real life accidents on film/tv sets  (Read 3427 times)

Jim_Campbell

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Re: Real life accidents on film/tv sets
« Reply #45 on: 29 November, 2021, 01:39:06 PM »
Pilots are expected to check their aircraft before take off, even if it's just come out of the maintenance hangar after being worked on by expert aviation engineers.

That's exactly my point. I am not a pilot — it's not for me to check the pilot's skills before I get on a plane. An actor is not an armourer, it's not for the actor to check the armourer's skills before accepting a weapon which it is the armourer's literal job to ensure is safe.
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The Legendary Shark

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Re: Real life accidents on film/tv sets
« Reply #46 on: 29 November, 2021, 02:52:03 PM »

The pilot is not an aviation engineer, just as the actor is not an armourer, but the pilot is expected to check the 'plane before flying it just as the actor (the person pulling the trigger), in my view, is expected to check the weapon before firing it even if it was handed over by the best armourer in the world.

Given the number of films/shows in which guns are used, it's impressive how few incidents like this happen. Still, one is too many so an extra layer of safety (the actor checking the gun) would be pointless ~99.99% of the time but still good practice in order to try and get that pointlessness down to 99.999%.

Further, I don't say that the armourer is blameless in this case, far from it, but neither is the actor.

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Dark Jimbo

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Re: Real life accidents on film/tv sets
« Reply #47 on: 29 November, 2021, 03:16:32 PM »
...the pilot is expected to check the 'plane before flying it just as the actor (the person pulling the trigger), in my view, is expected to check the weapon before firing it even if it was handed over by the best armourer in the world.

But how can the actor be expected to know what to look for?!

Funt Solo

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Re: Real life accidents on film/tv sets
« Reply #48 on: 29 November, 2021, 03:33:32 PM »
I thought the plot to Captain America: Civil War was pretty weak (in terms of motivation for conflict within the group), but now...
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Jim_Campbell

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Re: Real life accidents on film/tv sets
« Reply #49 on: 29 November, 2021, 03:58:42 PM »
Further, I don't say that the armourer is blameless in this case, far from it, but neither is the actor.

For fuck's sake: yes, the actor is blameless. They were handed a prop weapon and told it was safe by the person whose entire job it is to make sure that prop weapons are safe. This is 100% on the armourer who is trained, qualified and paid to ensure that no prop weapon is put in the hands of anyone in a state where it might be dangerous.

I have literally no idea why you're arguing this point. It's like saying "Well, the Health & Safety man said the scaffolding was safe but I, with no experience or expertise in scaffolding, should take it upon myself to check the scaffolding because they might make a mistake."

I'm not saying no one ever makes mistakes, I'm saying that when a qualified professional gives you advice relating to something directy within their remit and which you have lesser or no skill/knowledge of, you're supposed to defer to their expertise.
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The Legendary Shark

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Re: Real life accidents on film/tv sets
« Reply #50 on: 29 November, 2021, 04:48:27 PM »

I'm arguing the point because I believe in personal responsibility. If an expert handed me a gun, assured me it was safe and then told me to shoot somebody with it, I'd check that gun first. I hope you would too, if only to prove the expert right.

And yes, I'd check scaffolding too, at least give it a shake and keep an eye out for faults. Just blindly trusting people is not always the best policy - as the case we are discussing demonstrates.

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Funt Solo

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Re: Real life accidents on film/tv sets
« Reply #51 on: 29 November, 2021, 04:54:43 PM »
No no - I'm with Shark on this one. When I enter an aircraft, I always insist on checking the tire pressure, taking chemical samples of the food for traces of salmonella, breathalyzing the pilot and carrying out a psychiatric evaluation of the copilot.

OF COURSE!
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The Legendary Shark

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Re: Real life accidents on film/tv sets
« Reply #52 on: 29 November, 2021, 05:35:47 PM »

That's a false equivalence - you're comparing the pilot, who has responsibility for the 'plane and the safety of the passengers ("Is the aircraft I'm responsible for safe?"), with the passenger, whose only responsibility is personal ("do I want to trust my life to this airline?").

The person holding the gun is responsible, as TJM's post demonstrates. Had the muppet with the water pistol been shot at, his defence could never be, "well, the guy in the toy shop's an expert on toys and told me this water pistol was safe so the sentry had no right to shoot at me." A gun is a gun and demands respect from everyone who handles it.
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Funt Solo

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Re: Real life accidents on film/tv sets
« Reply #53 on: 29 November, 2021, 06:46:08 PM »
The two sides of the argument seem to be:

A. People put their trust in experts all the time, in situations that could be deadly if the expert has either made a mistake or been lax in their duties.

B. People should become experts on everything that could potentially be deadly, that they operate. So - blank-firing guns on film sets, cars, gas appliances...

That's fine if you want to go with B, but I just don't see how it makes any sense.
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The Legendary Shark

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Re: Real life accidents on film/tv sets
« Reply #54 on: 29 November, 2021, 07:33:58 PM »

I think that's an over-simplification.

To put a statist spin on it, people do not need to be experts on cars to drive a car but they do need a driving license, people do not need to be experts on gas boilers to install a gas boiler but they do need to be certificated to install them - so perhaps actors required to fire guns should be licensed also, or at least trained to a sufficient standard.

To me, the two major poles of this argument seem to be that a) the armourer bears sole responsibility (Jim's position, I think - I don't want to put words in your mouth so please accept my apologies if I've misunderstood) and b) armourer and actor share the responsibility, which is my position.

There is no need to go straight to the extreme of demanding that everyone become an expert at everything they intend to do but, especially when another life is in potential jeopardy (in this case the actor who was shot), some level of proficiency would seem to be in order. The argument "how was he supposed to know, he's only an actor?" holds no water for me. I'm a campsite handyman and gardener's assistant with no special training or in-depth knowledge but I know that guns are dangerous, even toy guns, and should never be taken lightly.

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Hawkmumbler

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Re: Real life accidents on film/tv sets
« Reply #55 on: 29 November, 2021, 07:57:29 PM »

I think that's an over-simplification.


Except it really is that simple.

Its the armorers job to check the security and safety of any weapon props. Dude was SEEN goofing off with it, firing live rounds from a device that he knew was going to be used in a film he was working on.
That is, by any and all measures, a profound failing of his responsibilities.

Films are a collaborative effort, nobody should be expected to do everything.

Tiplodocus

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Re: Real life accidents on film/tv sets
« Reply #56 on: 29 November, 2021, 08:16:06 PM »

I'm arguing the point because I believe in personal responsibility. If an expert handed me a gun, assured me it was safe and then told me to shoot somebody with it, I'd check that gun first. I hope you would too, if only to prove the expert right.


But how? By firing it into the air? At which point you have ruined the take and they need to reset the gun again. Which you test by? At some point, the actor has to fire the gun in the general direction they have been asked... And then they can only trust the expert who handed it to them.
« Last Edit: 29 November, 2021, 08:19:00 PM by Tiplodocus »
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The Legendary Shark

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Re: Real life accidents on film/tv sets
« Reply #57 on: 29 November, 2021, 08:41:34 PM »

Films are a collaborative effort, nobody should be expected to do everything.


Hence the shared responsibility.


But how? By firing it into the air? At which point you have ruined the take and they need to reset the gun again.


Actor and armourer work on setting up the weapon together before the scene is shot? Actor learns to tell the difference between blanks and live rounds? I'm not a fan of the ad-hoc, "oh, the scene's about to start, maybe I should check this thing now at the worst possible moment" scenario you suggest. There are myriad ways in which such procedures could be worked into a (probably already wide-ranging) production schedule.

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milstar

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Re: Real life accidents on film/tv sets
« Reply #58 on: 29 November, 2021, 08:43:51 PM »
Since this incident, I argued more or less in Baldwin's favour. The armorer, AD did a really shitty job, that's a fact. But I argued with some folks who were telling me "no, Alec should personally check the gun","Alec shouldn't point the gun in camera's direction" (even though they were rehearsing a scene), I blew a fuse. I mean, I like guns - in movies. Irl, I detest them and hope I'll never get a shot to fire a shot. Probably it's why personal checking a gun won't be an operation I'll perform. Nor I am legally required.
The armorer? She reportedly got her job through her Daddy who is some big name in the industry. But she already proven she's not up to her task, scaring Nic Cage off the set when she nonchalantly flaunted around with the guns she was holding. I expect this case of negligence to be persecuted and hopefully, that Hollywood will learn something out of it.
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Hawkmumbler

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Re: Real life accidents on film/tv sets
« Reply #59 on: 29 November, 2021, 08:46:03 PM »

Films are a collaborative effort, nobody should be expected to do everything.


Hence the shared responsibility.


Except this isn't how it works when someone is literally EDUCATED and PAID to be responsible.
I sincerely say this from the heart as someone who has spent a lot of time on film sets dude, you have no bloody idea how complicated they are and why your notion of shared responsibility just does not gel with them.