Production on DEADPOOL 2 was shut down today after stuntwoman Joi “SJ” Harris was involved in a fatal motorcycle crash while performing as a double for Zazie Beetz’ Domino character.
Harris is the first African-American female professional road racer and was doing her first film as a stunts performer, according to Deadline, who confirmed her identity via ACTRA.
Witnesses said Harris was filming a sequence when she mistakenly accelerated and crashed through a plate-glass window at Shaw Tower on West Waterfront Road. Unfortunately, she was not wearing a helmet as the character she was portraying wasn’t supposed to wear one in that scene.
Star Ryan Reynolds released a statement, saying: “Today, we tragically lost a member of our crew while filming Deadpool. We’re heartbroken, shocked and devastated…but recognize nothing can come close to the grief and inexplicable pain her family and loves ones must feel in this moment. My heart pours out to them — along with each and every person she touched in this world.”
In a statement to Deadline, director David Leitch said: “I’m deeply saddened by the loss of one of our stunt performers today. No words can express how I and the rest of the Deadpool 2 crew feel about this tragedy. Our thoughts are with her family, friends and loved ones in this difficult time.
20th Century Fox followed up with: “We are deeply saddened by the accident that occurred on the set of Deadpool 2 this morning. Our hearts and prayers are with the family, friends and colleagues of our crew member during this difficult time.”
Harris started her motorcyle riding in Brooklyn and became the first African-American woman to be licensed to compete in the American Motorcyclist Association.
XMF’s deepest sympathies go out to her family, friends and colleagues. May she forever rest in peace.