More Details Emerge in Gregg Allman Film Death
The death of Sarah Jones on the location site of a movie based on the life of Gregg Allman has prompted production to be suspended while a homicide investigation takes place. Yesterday (March 4), some new information has come to light about what happened that tragic day.
The Hollywood Reporter has an extended report, featuring a graphic eyewitness account from Joyce Gilliard, a hairstylist who survived the harrowing accident. Jones was struck by a train on Feb. 20 as it crossed the Altamaha River, where the crew were filming a dream sequence that involved a bed being placed across the tracks. Gilliard said that, on the day of the shoot, the crew was warned that, if a train approached, they only had 60 seconds to clear the site. “Everybody on the crew was tripping over that,” she recounted. “A minute? Are you serious?”
Fortunately, Gilliard managed to barely escape by hanging on to one of the trestle's girders, but the force of the train as it passed resulted in a compound fracture in her left arm. She has been told that it will never be straightened again, and she has nightmares daily as a result of the tragedy.
Investigations have begun as to whether or not the film's producer and director, Randall Miller, took the necessary safety precautions and/or had permission to shoot on the tracks. Miller's production company, Unclaimed Freight, has been accused of unsafely shooting films in the past, albeit with no injuries. Miller could possibly be charged with negligent homicide.