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William Hurt Pulls Out Of Starring Role In Troubled Production Of 'Midnight Rider'

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William Hurt at a premiere in New York City last fall. (Photo by Gary Gershoff/Getty Images for Science Channel)
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Actor William Hurt has pulled out of his starring role in the troubled production of the Gregg Allman biopic "Midnight Rider." It sounds like a big blow to a production that was halted by tragedy on its first day of filming. However, a source close to the production speaking to Deadline insisted that the filmmakers “were already looking to recast some roles," including the lead role.

Hurt signed onto the project in January, Variety says. The production was put on hold in February when a freight train plowed through the location where crew was filming, killing assistant camera operator Sarah Jones and injuring seven others. The crew was shooting a dream sequence on a train trestle in Jesup, Georgia, and they didn't have time to get out of the way of the oncoming train. Hurt was on set at the time.

Unclaimed Freight, the production company behind the film, recently announced that they were planning on continuing filming in Los Angeles this June. Unions aren't happy that production is moving forward before an investigation is complete. And crew members in the film industry—union and not—are calling for a boycott of the film, and the producers behind it.

The Wayne County Sheriff's Department recently announced that they were leaving it up to the District Attorney to decide whether to pursue criminal charges in the case.

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Related:
Sarah Jones' Story: Camera Assistant Killed On The Job Is Honored At The Oscars
In Honor Of Sarah Jones, Crew Members Vow To Boycott 'Midnight Rider'