A stuntman has reportedly died after suffering a head injury on the set of the AMC series The Walking Dead. John Bernecker fell from a 25-foot balcony on the Walking Dead set Wednesday and was airlifted to Atlanta Medical Center to be placed on a ventilator, TMZ reported. Bernecker, 33, reportedly died Thursday evening.
According to previous reports, Bernecker and an actor were rehearsing a fight sequence intended to end with a "routine fall" from a balcony. Bernecker lost his footing and fell onto a concrete surface, Deadline reported Thursday. AMC has suspended production on the series, which is currently in the middle of shooting season 8, for an undetermined amount of time.
"We are saddened to report that John Bernecker, a talented stuntman for The Walking Dead and numerous other television shows and films, suffered serious injuries from a tragic accident on set," AMC said in a statement to Variety prior to reports of his death. "He was immediately transported to an Atlanta hospital and we have temporarily shut down production. We are keeping John and his family in our thoughts and prayers."
In a statement, a Screen Actors Guild‐American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) spokesperson said the on-set accident was under investigation. "As always, the safety and security of our members and others on set is of crucial concern to us, and we are focused on this in our investigation," the spokesperson said. "Our thoughts and prayers are with the performer and his family."
Bernecker's other credits include stunt work on a variety of well-known film and television productions including Logan, Get Out, Keanu, Scream Queens, 22 Jump Street, This Is the End, and the forthcoming Black Panther.
AMC did not immediately respond to Complex's request for comment.