In early 1993, Brandon Lee – son of martial arts legend Bruce Lee – landed the lead role of Eric Draven in The Crow, a film based on a Gothic superhero comic of the same title created by James O’Barr.
As it turned out, Eric Draven would be Lee’s final acting performance. On March 31 that same year, the cast and crew filmed some of the last scenes of the film at Carolco Studios in Wilmington, North Carolina.
Lee entered a room; then another actor shot him from a reasonably close distance of 15 – 20 feet.
The gun used in the scene was supposed to have been loaded with blanks, but poor communication among film crews led to a catastrophic incident in which Lee was severely wounded from the gunshot.
Brandon Lee died on March 31, 1993 – more than a year before the film was released.
After nearly a month of investigation, the North Carolina District Attorney Jerry Spivey announced that his death during the filming of The Crow was due to negligence on the part of the film’s crew; there was no foul play found.
10 The Shooter
Michael Massee was the unfortunate shooter. Despite the conclusion that the incident involved no foul play, the actor would be forever known as the man who accidentally shot Brandon Lee to death.
In addition to The Crow, he also appeared in some well-known films and television series such as 24, Se7en, The Amazing Spider-Man, and The Amazing Spider-Man 2.
In an interview in 2005, Massee revealed he still had nightmares about the incident. On October 20, 2016, Michael Massee died of stomach cancer at 64 in Los Angeles.
9 The Shot
The Crow was the second film appearance for Massee, who played the role of Funboy.
In the tragic scene where Funboy shot Eric Draven, the gun in use was a .44 Magnum Smith & Wesson Model 629 revolver. Massee did not do anything wrong as he was only following the script.
To everybody’s surprise, the round was live, and it struck Lee in the stomach. He was rushed to the hospital immediately. After several hours of surgery, he died on March 31, 1993, at 28. Massee took a year off from acting following the incident.