Why Tom Cruise Is Being Partially Blamed for ‘American Made’ Plane Crash Deaths

A new lawsuit alleges that Tom Cruise is partially to blame for the deaths of two men during production of American Made.

The families of Alan Purwin and Carlos Berl, the men who died during a plane crash while working on American Made, are suing the film’s producers, and they name Tom Cruise in the suit as being partially responsible for the deaths.

According to court documents published by The Blast, the plaintiffs say that the movie’s production was high-risk and that “the demands of filming in Colombia, together with Cruise’s and director Doug Liman’s enthusiasm for multiple takes of lavish flying sequences, added hours to every filming day and added days to the schedule.”

Tom Cruise at the premiere of 'The Mummy.'

Tom Cruise at the premiere of The Mummy. | Angela Weiss|Getty Images

The lawsuit also states that the pilot was not prepared for the flight and that it was not well planned.

“Lapses in planning, coordinating, scheduling, and flight safety that were the Defendants’ responsibility resulted in an unqualified and unprepared pilot being pressed into service for a dangerous flight in a vintage aircraft across an unfamiliar mountain pass in bad weather,” the lawsuit states, according to PEOPLE.

In addition, the lawsuit quotes what it says are emails from Alan Purwin, one of the men who died in the crash. Purwin allegedly said that Tom Cruise and others were putting the crew at risk, referring to Tom Cruise as “TC.”

“You have no idea the exposure TC and the entire Aerial Team is realizing every time we get in the air,” he said. “There’s a very ‘thin line’ between keeping all aerial activities safe and having an accident. Trust me on this!”

He goes on to describe unsafe working conditions and says that the movie is “the most dangerous project I’ve ever encountered.” He also says that it has been taking every ounce of skill he has to make sure he and Tom Cruise don’t come home in a box.

Tom Cruise at the premiere of Rock of Ages in 2012

Tom Cruise at the premiere of Rock of Ages in 2012. | Stuart Wilson/Getty Images

The plaintiffs say that the crash could have been avoided had the production not ignored safety procedures, also saying that Tom Cruise himself could have piloted the plane.

The fatal crash in question took place in September 2015, when the small plane went down in the Colombian mountains and killed Alan Purwin and Carlos Brel. The plane was carrying crew members who were wrapping up work; it did not actually crash during a scene. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the movie’s producers wanted the plane in Medellin, and it was being shuttled when the crash happened.

A Los Angeles Superior Court judge is expected to hold a summary judgment hearing in the Alan Purwin lawsuit on September 29, the same day that American Made is released in the United States.

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