The Little Mermaid Producers Sued For $191,000 By Special Effects Artist Over On-Set Wrist Injury

A veteran special effects artist is suing for £150,000 ($191,000) over an injury sustained on set of Disney feature The Little Mermaid at Pinewood Studios.

According to the Evening Standard, model maker Christine Overs fell and broke her wrist when part of the set gave way in October 2020. The film — which stars Halle Bailey in the lead role — released on Disney+ this month after grossing north of $564M worldwide.

Her credits include work on GoldenEye, the original Dune, Aliens and Superman IV during a career spanning several decades. She also worked on the Thomas the Tank Engine animated series and worked at Jim Henson’s Creative Shop of Neverending Story III in 1994.

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Sandcastle Pictures, the production entity Disney set up to make The Little Mermaid, has admitted full liability for the fall, but is contesting how much she is due, according to the Standard.

Overs had been working on a beach scene. She is considered a specialist in beach and snow scenes and was sculpting a lagoon scene on a raised beach when she hit the floor hard after a makeshift step gave way, the Standard reported.

Overs, now 74, claims the injury disrupted the final years of her working life as she now struggles to use the hand and her work requires precise finger movements. She needed five steel pins fitted and a ‘fixator’ up to her elbow to stablize the arm.

The injuries gave her “ongoing wrist pain, her lawyers said. They also claimed she left with a “substantial level of disability” and was unable to drive following in incident. The Standard reported from a pre-trial hearing last week in which her lawyer said she was planning to continue working into her eighties.

The lawyers accused Sandcastle of failing to “provide any adequate access to the set, which led to the claimant falling from a makeshift polystyrene step and injuring her wrist.”

The pre-trial hearing in London determined the legal costs of the trial, which will take place at a later, undetermined date.

Disney had not responded to requests for comment at press time.

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