Yesterday, we reported that production on ‘Deadpool 2’ which is filming in Vancouver was shut down when stunt performer Joi “S.J.” Harris was killed while performing a motorcycle sequence. The accident occurred on Monday. Now, two days later, we have learned that the film has resumed production.
There is also some new information regarding the accident. Harris had just been brought onto the production last Wednesday and this was her first time working as a movie stunt person. She was the stand-in for Zazie Beetz who is playing the mutant mercenary Domino. A prior stunt person had been fitted with a helmet covered with hair, because in the scene, Domino was not supposed to be wearing one. Because Harris was brought in at the last minute, there was no time to fit her with a similar helmet, so she attempted the stunt without one.
Harris was a professional motorcycle racer with many years worth of experience and was the first African American woman sanctioned to compete by the American Motorcyclist Association. She spent the entire weekend practicing and reportedly ran the stunt at least five times before filming. According to eye witness reports, her motorcycle accelerated instead of slowing down and Harris and her bike crashed through a plate glass window at Shaw Tower.
Messages of sympathy have been pouring in since Harris’ death on Monday on various social media outlets.
On Facebook, Porsche Taylor, the editor of ‘Black Girls Ride’ magazine who also worked with Harris on her Threader Racing organization, stated “SJ was a real life superhero, and not just playing one on film.” She went on to say that Harris “was destined for greatness” and added that this job on ‘Deadpool 2’ was “the opportunity of a lifetime.”
Taylor also stated:
“She was brilliant and tenacious. Once she set her sights on a goal, she went after it with every fiber of her being. To know her was to love her… her laugh was infectious. She knew there was nothing she couldn’t do. We wanted to do all we could to uplift and support her, so the world would know her name.
“We were soooo excited about what was yet to come, when her life was cut short. [SJ] raced alongside the men, often leading the pack and giving them a run for their money. Every time she crashed, my heart skipped a beat. But deep down, I knew this was who she was. Racing was where she found her joy.
“She died while living her dream out loud, and doing what she loved till the end.”
On her own blog, Harris had written about crashing:
“A racer can’t let it stop us. In short when it comes to crashing, I’ve learned to accept that I am not the greatest rider that exists and that there is always something to learn when on track and pushing limits. Sometimes I’m going to eat it if I’m impatient. Everything takes time. Face your fears you never know what you can missing out on.”
Despite the delay, ‘Deadpool 2′ should still meet its scheduled release date of June 1, 2018.
Once more, sympathies go out to Harris’ family and loved ones.