J.C. ‘Spike’ Osorio, Worker Killed on Marvel Series ‘Wonder Man,’ Fell When Catwalk Gave Way, Sources Say

Rexa Vella

J.C. ‘Spike’ Osorio, Worker Killed on Marvel Series ‘Wonder Man,’ Fell When Catwalk Gave Way, Sources Say

J.C. “Spike” Osorio, the rigger who died on the set of Marvel series “Wonder Man” last week, fell when the wooden catwalk gave way beneath his feet, according to three sources familiar with the accident.

Osorio was working at Stage 3 at Radford Studio Center in L.A.’s Studio City when the accident occurred at 6:42 a.m. on Feb. 6. Bystanders told paramedics that Osorio fell about 50 feet. CPR was unsuccessful, and he was pronounced dead at the scene.

According to a source who was at the scene, one of the wooden supports that held up a section of the catwalk gave way. The planks that rested on top of the support fell away, and Osorio fell through the catwalk.

That account was confirmed by an IATSE official who arrived on the scene shortly afterward, and who asked not to be identified due to the pending investigation.

“This wasn’t the member’s fault,” the union official said. “He wasn’t doing anything wrong.”

A second IATSE official also confirmed that account.

“As tragic as it is, I think it is a rather simple case,” the person said.

Cal/OSHA is conducting the investigation, which may take several months, according to a spokesperson for the agency. The agency declined to comment while the investigation is open.

A spokesperson for Radford Studio Center expressed condolences for the death.

“We are deeply saddened by the death of Juan ‘Spike’ Osorio and offer our heartfelt condolences to his family and friends,” the spokesperson said. “We continue to fully cooperate with the ongoing investigations.”

Osorio’s family has retained attorneys who specialize in wrongful death and personal injury cases. The lawyers declined to comment for this story.

Hackman Capital Partners bought the Radford studio from ViacomCBS in 2021 for $1.85 billion. The company has since unveiled a $1 billion plan to expand and modernize the facility, saying that it has suffered from “decades of under-investment.”

In its zoning application to the city, the developer described the studio buildings as “aging and outdated.”

Ivan Migel, a veteran rigging grip, said that it’s well known that some studio facilities are old and in disrepair.

“A lot of them were built 50 years ago,” he said, adding that he did not know the specifics of what happened at Radford. “There’s a lack of interest to do any preventive work on the stages. They put as little money into the stages as possible.”

Film crews work for the productions that rent the facilities, but they do not have responsibility or authority to make structural repairs, he said. That responsibility falls to the landlord.

When a crew member is working on the “perms” — the grid of wooden beams above the stage — they are supposed to be attached to a safety harness. But Migel said there is no such rule for walking on catwalks, which have handrails and knee rails and are presumed to be areas of safety.

Osorio, 41, leaves behind a wife, Joanne Osorio-Wu and his mother, Zoila Osorio. In a remembrance last Friday, his family described him as a “meticulous lighting technician, and a stickler for safety at work.”

Osorio was a member of IATSE Local 728. In a message to members last week, Alan Rowe, the director of safety and training for Local 728, said that the union is suffering from “sudden and overwhelming grief.” He said the union is engaged with the Cal/OSHA investigation, and in the meantime he asked members to refrain from “idle speculation.”

“There are no words to describe the emotions that we are all feeling at something that simply should not have happened,” he wrote. “When the report is released we will all know what caused us to endure this immense pain and sadness.”

The union is holding a candlelight vigil at 6 p.m. on Saturday at the headquarters of IATSE Local 80, 2520 W. Olive Ave., in Burbank.

A GoFundMe campaign has raised more than $170,000 to support the family.


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