Filming came to a screeching halt on the set of “Deadpool 2” in Vancouver, Canada, on Monday after a stuntwoman died performing a motorcycle scene.
According to People magazine, the stuntwoman has been identified as Joi “SJ” Harris, the first African-American female road racer.Screenshot/Instagram
“Deadpool 2” was the first film Harris had ever worked on. She was hired as a stunt double for the character Domino, who is played by Zazie Beetz.
According to her website, Harris was an experienced motorcycle driver, who was well aware that crashing was a danger she may have to face in her sport. She wrote on her blog:
“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.”
And sadly, it was a crash that would take her life.
According to Deadline, Harris was performing a motorcycle stunt without a helmet, because the character did not wear one, when the accident occurred.
— The Star Vancouver (@starvancouver) August 14, 2017
Eyewitnesses on-set said that she appeared to accelerate around a corner when she lost control of the motorcycle and went through the plate glass window of a nearby building.
Metro News reported that she may have been trying to avoid hitting two pedestrians when the crash occurred.
Paramedics quickly arrived, but the stuntwoman was declared dead at the scene.
— Ben Miljure (@CTVNewsBen) August 14, 2017
Before her crash, Harris seemed thrilled to be working on her very first film set.
Just three days before the fatal accident, she posted an inspirational message to her Facebook page. Along with a selfie, Harris wrote:
“EVERYTHING FOR A REASON. #staythecourse”
EVERYTHING FOR A REASON. #staythecourse
At first, the photo was flooded with positive comments. But after her death, the post started to serve as a haunting memorial.
Friends, family, and even strangers left condolences and words of support on the beloved stuntwoman’s Facebook post. Some wrote:Screenshot/Facebook Screenshot/Facebook Screenshot/Facebook
“Deadpool 2” star Ryan Reynolds also posted a heartbreaking statement about Harris to his Twitter on Monday. The actor wrote:
— Ryan Reynolds (@VancityReynolds) August 14, 2017
The fatal crash came just days after Tom Cruise was injured performing a jumping stunt on the set of “Mission: Impossible 6” — though it remains unclear if the actor sustained any serious injury from the accident.
Filming on the set of “Deadpool 2” has been halted as an investigation into the crash continues, according to Metro News. It’s unclear when shooting will resume.
But for now, Harris’ friends and family will continue to mourn their tragic loss.