– The Awful Accident That Happened While Filming Tom Cruise’s ‘American Made’

Tom Cruise’s daring portrayal of pilot Barry Seal in 2017’s American Made took a tragic turn during filming. The production involved three pilots, Carlos Berl, Jimmy Lee Garland, and Andrew Purwin, flying a twin-engine Aerostar 600 in Colombia. The September 2015 crash claimed two lives and left Garland severely injured. Lawsuits by the families alleged negligence, questioning safety measures.

Berl, experienced but unfamiliar with the Aerostar, voiced safety concerns. Garland, a pilot-mechanic, was also Tom Cruise’s double. Purwin, known for risky stunts, had a controversial aviation record. The crash, attributed to bad weather, occurred after intense pressure to leave immediately.

Legal battles ensued, with claims of pressured flying, compromised planes, and dishonest qualifications. In 2019, an undisclosed settlement concluded the lawsuits, highlighting the film’s tragic impact on safety, vetting, and regulatory processes in movie production.

Similar aerial risks occurred during Top Gun’s filming in 1985. American Made, despite its resurgence on streaming platforms, remains a poignant reminder of the hazards in cinematic feats.