Recently a camera assistant (AC), Sarah Jones, from Georgia, died on set (http://www.cnn.com/2014/02/26/showbiz/slates-for-sarah-elizabeth-jones/). Her death has brought a few things to light on the lengths we go through as filmmakers to make a movie possible and the dangers involved. We work 10-12 hours or more in a standard work day, work with heavy equipment and move quickly in the name of the bottom line.
Her death impacts the larger film community because we are all family. When a show starts we are all workers then become a team and overtime become a family as result of the long hours we work, the inside jokes we create, the overall shared experience and the mountains we climb together. There really is nothing like the family you make while working on a show, it’s really something amazing.
For me, her death hits close to home because one of my friends died on set last May (2013), which I took very hard. Her death has also prompted a movement in the industry called “Slates for Sarah.” This is a video of the productions that placed Sarah’s name on a slate in her honor as part of “Slates for Sarah.”
A petition has also been created to honor her in the memoriam section of the Oscars tribute (http://www.deadline.com/2014/02/oscars-midnight-rider-sarah-jones-in-memoriam/).