After three criminal convictions in the on-set death of Midnight Rider crew member Sarah Jones, filmmakers should think twice about cutting corners, said Georgia District Attorney Jackie L. Johnson and Asst. District Attorney John Johnson.
In the video above from their news conference today, shot for Deadline by Patricia Leon, the two prosecutors said the convictions of Randall Miller, Hillary Schwartz and Jay Sedrish should make it clear that criminal charges might await reckless filmmakers if things go wrong.
“They have the mechanisms in place where safety should be followed,” said Jackie Johnson. “(The convictions) got a lot of attention. Whether people recognize this as a warning, people that would otherwise steal a shot and be reckless with other people’s lives, maybe they’ll think twice about that.”
John Johnson agreed with Jones’ father, Richard Jones, that the convictions might have burst “the bubble of invincibility that Hollywood has about themselves. I think that’s the important part: that crew members now know they can speak up. That directors and producers and first assistant directors know that there are people out there, that there’s now finally somebody out there — Ms. Johnson — who will prosecute when someone fails in those responsibilities. From a historical standpoint, that makes an impact.”