‘AGT: Extreme’ Stuntman Jonathan Goodwin Files Lawsuit Over 2021 Accident That Left Him Paralyzed

Former stuntman Jonathan Goodwin is suing for negligence and peculiar risk after an accident on the set of America’s Got Talent: Extreme left him paralyzed. 

As The Ashley previously told you, Jonathan was rehearsing a stunt for the NBC competition series in 2021 when the stunt went horribly wrong, causing Jonathan to be crushed by two flaming cars before falling 40 feet, missing the safety airbag and landing on his head.

Jonathan’s fiancée, Amanda Abbington, later revealed that Jonathan lost a kidney, broke both shoulder blades, shattered both legs, suffered third-degree burns, broke his spine, severed his spinal cord and “nearly died” in the horrific accident. 

Nearly two years later– and more than a year after he revealed that the accident had left him paralyzed– Jonathan is suing the parties he believes are responsible.  

According to People, the former stuntman filed a lawsuit last week against Fremantle, SYCO Entertainment, Marathon Productions, Walk About Inc., T-Minus Productions, NBC Universal and stunt coordinator T.J. White. The 43-year-old is demanding a jury trial. 

The lawsuit alleges that the named parties failed to implement multiple industry safety standards on set, including “designing and modifying a stunt in a manner that made it highly like to fail, hiring incompetent individuals to oversee and control the safety of the design and execution of the stunt, failing to test the stunt without a live person after modifications were made, failing to implement and require adequate redundancies and suitable airbags (safety nets), and failing to ensure that adequate safeguards were taken to prevent injuries.”

The lawsuit goes on to claim that because of the “conscious disregard for the safety of others,” Jonathan suffered “catastrophic, life-altering injuries.” 

In a statement to NBC News, Jonathan’s attorney, Stuart Fraenkel, accused those named in the lawsuit of “putting profits and ratings before safety,” claiming the producers and staff “could have taken a number of simple steps to ensure Jonathan’s safety.”

Instead, he claims, production on the show was “rushed, chaotic and staffed by a team that lacked the necessary expertise and life experience.” 

“Jonathan will be in a wheelchair for the rest of his life because there were inadequate safety practices, protocols and procedures in place to protect him,” he stated.

According to his attorney, Jonathan also filed the lawsuit to bring attention to the entertainment industry’s alleged ongoing lack of safety problem.  

“[Jonathan] hopes that by bringing this claim, lessons will be learned, changes will be made and others in the future will not be exposed to unnecessary risks and danger.” 

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(Photos: NBC; Instagram) 

6 Responses

  1. I feel horrible for him but I’m not sure he would be successful in this lawsuit. He has been an extreme stunt performer for many many years. He knows the risks involved and that they could be very severe and possibly cause his death. I am definitely no expert here but if I was doing something that was a potential risk to my life I wouldn’t leave it to other people hired by a reality show to make sure I’m safe. He has been in the business long enough that I’m sure he has his own people that he trusts ensuring his safety to the best of their ability.

  2. I don’t understand. How would he win that lawsuit? He chose to participate in the rehearsal. I doubt anyone forced him up there. Why didn’t he ask questions about the safety beforehand? I’m not trying to victim blame here. I’m just curious as to how this happened and what his responsibility was for his own safety. I would think a stuntman knows what kind of risks are involved and what the consequences could be.

    1. Right. At what point does his responsibility factor in?

      I’m sure they’ll pay out. They have to for face, at least medical and pain and suffering.

      But I’m absolutely sure these contract say “injury or death”. I mean, kids sports sign ups say that, I’m sure a huge TV show would have similar writing.

    2. You’re right all stunt men know the risks. But if you watch the video.. they saw him struggling to get out of the jacket.. the time had lapsed when he should’ve been out, so there should have been something/someone in place to have prevented those cars from being released. He was paralyzed, he obviously took responsibility but there was clearly some negligence. It’s not like he was walking across a tightrope and fell and then sued.. but then again like you said here’s obviously risks when you’re a stuntman. I just hate to see anyone paralyzed..

  3. I’m sure they’ll pay him well, but does he have a legal standing here?
    Dont they sign away their rights pretty much on these shows?

  4. I hope he gets all he can from them! Their negligence on the set was sickening and they deserve to be gutted for all they have!

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