Injured SPIDER-MAN Actor Daniel Curry Talks Accident, Lawsuit and More: 'I Thought, Am I Going to Die?'
More has come to light on the SPIDER-MAN: TURN OFF THE DARK saga involving injured dancer Daniel Curry, as the performer has opened up about the experience and the resulting lawsuit in an interview with The New York Times.
Curry's stunt in the show was to "plant himself firmly on a hydraulic lift in the pit beneath the stage, then remain steady as he rose a dozen feet to emerge for the start of Act II." But on August 15, 2013, as the lift was rising, "something solid pressed down against his right foot, then crushed it. His foot had become trapped between the lift and the stage," the Times wrote.
"I thought, am I going to die? I mean, I was praying through those moments, and just trying to stay as calm as possible. As alert as possible. I didn't want to pass out, in case I needed to answer people trying to help me," Curry said. "It felt like forever...But dancing teaches you how to focus. I was focusing as much as I could."
After several surgeries, doctors removed three-quarters of Curry's injured foot, as well as replacing some other tissue; three portions of his foot and leg were shattered and took pins and plates to reconstruct.
SPIDER-MAN's producers said the accident was due to a human error. But an investigation by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration determined that the lift did not have "'machine guarding' to protect performers from 'crushing hazards as the moving lift ascends to the stage'." As a result, SPIDER-MAN's producers agreed to a settlement of $2,880, paid to the OSHA.
Curry filed a lawsuit in January against the show's producers, engineering consultants and others, pointing to the "negligence in the design and operation of a mechanical lift that Mr. Curry was using onstage when he was hurt." You can peruse Curry's full complaint here.
The dancer is seeking monetary compensation for the "serious and protracted permanent injuries" he sustained in the SPIDER-MAN incident while using the lift "in accordance with the instructions", after being told it was safe. His complaint states that producers knew the lift was dangerous and did nothing to prevent injuries among cast members.
Among the defendants are producers Michael Cohl, Jeremiah J. Harris, the musical's general manger Alan Wasser Associates, engineering and technology firms associated with the show, and the owners of the Foxwoods Theater.
Due to his injuries, Curry is now unable to dance or perform, which prevents him from working to pay for his "large sums" of medical costs.
SPIDER-MAN: TURN OFF THE DARK is moving to Las Vegas after more than three years at Broadway's Foxwoods Theater. The musical ran for 1,268 performances in New York, but it was plagued with troubles since its preview period, including cast injuries, cost overruns, harsh reviews and lawsuits.
SPIDER-MAN Turn Off The Dark began preview performances on November 28, 2010. The show officially opened on Tuesday, June 14, 2011. SPIDER-MAN Turn Off The Dark features music and lyrics by 22-time Grammy Award-winners Bono and The Edgeand a book co-written by Julie Taymor, Glen Berger and Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, with direction by Ms. Taymor and additional direction by Philip William McKinley. Scenic Designer George Tsypin and Costume Designer Eiko Ishioka are winners of Outer Critics Circle Awards and were nominated for Tony Awards for their work on Spider-Man Turn Off the Dark.