5 Dangerous Costume Designs That Almost Took The Lives of Actors

Some say that acting is all about memorizing lines and looking good and pretty. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth. A well-produced film will completely immerse the audience in an imagined world. Having the best costume design available is one of the best investments in pulling this off.

On the other hand, actors dedicate themselves to fitting into some of the most absurd costumes to play a role perfectly. Unfortunately, however, there are costume designs that proved to be too extreme for an actor’s well-being. In fact, to a certain degree, some of these costumes nearly took the lives of actors.

Here are five costumes that nearly killed actors on set.

1.Wizard of Oz (1939) – Tin Man

Long before the golden age of computer-generated imagery, costume designers had to rely on paint to change an actor’s skin tone. And Buddy Ebsen, who played the Tin Man in the classic fantasy film Wizard of Oz, had to suffer serious consequences as a result of chemical reactions caused by such costumes.

Ebsen was rushed to the hospital for cramping and shortness of breath after nine days of wearing white face paint coated with aluminum dust. He even went into lung failure at one point. The studio had to make additional investments to compensate for this oversight and find a replacement for the actor while he recovered.

2.Titanic (1997) – Rose DeWitt Bukater

Stunt doubles are often referred to as the “heroes” of production sets. However, there are some shots that a director will not be able to achieve with body doubles. To play the part properly, the actors must risk their lives in dangerous environments.

In 1997’s Titanic, viewers were amazed by the massive investments that the studio laid out to give the film a sense of realism. Kate Winslet, who played Rose Bukater, on the other hand, was dissatisfied with her performance. She came dangerously close to drowning in one of the scenes in which she and Leonardo DiCaprio were fleeing a raging wave that crashed against a closed gate. Her coat became entangled underwater, and she had to struggle to free herself.

3.The Avengers (2012) – Black Widow

Massive film productions take pride in filming in some of the most exotic parts of the world. To a certain degree, filming on location gives eager viewers a deeper depth of immersion.

And on the set of The Avengers, the cast and crew traveled to the middle of a desert. Scarlett Johansson, who played Black Widow, particularly had troubles with her all-black tight costume under the heat of the desert sun. At one point, she even experienced hallucinations because of heatstroke.

4.The Grinch (2000) – Grinch

While 2000’s The Grinch was certainly a commercial success, lead star Jim Carrey won’t be looking back at his experience with great fondness. To begin with, the comedian had to wear special contact lenses that caused tremendous pain. He even stated that it felt like he had knives in his eyes.

Likewise, the full-body costume the Carrey wore also caused great discomfort. Reports say the actor credits a Navy SEAL for coaching him on how to handle panic attacks induced by claustrophobia and the outfit.

5.Lord of the Rings Trilogy (2001-2003) – Gimli

When you think of the amazing costume designs of The Lord of the Rings, you will surely be in awe of the depth of realism that their production accomplished. They accomplished this feat by having some of the actors wear facial prosthetics. One of them was John Rhys-Davies, who played Gimli.

The actor shared that he could only work one out of three days because of the allergic reactions he had from wearing the facial prosthetics. In addition, he was in constant pain every time he wore them.