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Hollywood Posts ‘Slates for Sarah’ to Honor Fallen Atlanta Filmmaker

Sarah Jones of Atlanta, a camera assistant on the movie "Midnight Rider" filming near Savannah, was killed in an accident on the set of the Gregg Allman biopic. Film crews worldwide are remembering her through social media.

Cinematographer Sarah Jones on the set of "Vampire Diaries." Jones, of Atlanta, was killed in an accident on a Savannah film location. Credit: Slates for Sarah Facebook page
Cinematographer Sarah Jones on the set of "Vampire Diaries." Jones, of Atlanta, was killed in an accident on a Savannah film location. Credit: Slates for Sarah Facebook page

A cinematographer’s death while working on a movie in Georgia has spurred tributes to her from film crews as far flung as Germany, Australia and the United Kingdom, as well as New York and Hollywood.

Sarah Elizabeth Jones, 27, of Atlanta, died Feb. 20 in Savannah. The South Carolina native was struck and killed by a freight train during filming of the Gregg Allman movie "Midnight Rider," reports the Los Angeles Times. Seven other crew members were injured in the incident.

A memorial service for Jones was held Feb. 26 in South Carolina, according to her obituary published in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

To honor Jones, her friends and family have launched a "Slates for Sarah" social media campaign, prompting crew members to post comments and pictures of Sarah's name written on film slates on Facebook and Twitter.

As of Wednesday afternoon, the Slates for Sarah Facebook page has more than 31,000 likes, with dozens of photos showing slates – the board that claps together to mark the beginning of a scene – on productions nationwide and internationally that mention Jones.

Notables observing Jones on their sets include the British hit “Downton Abbey,” the Kevin Bacon series “The Following,” the CBS hit “Blue Bloods,” the medics on the set of “CSI,” a Tweet by actress Alyssa Milano, and the “Vampire Diairies,” a series she worked on for several years.

The Slates for Sarah Facebook page also includes a link to a petition calling on the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to recognize Jones in Sunday’s Oscar In Memorium tribute, the Times says.

Jones was working as a second camera assistant when she was struck by a freight train roaring along a bridge where the movie was being filmed, the newspaper reports. While the film’s production company and crew had permission from the railroad to shoot"Midnight Rider" near the railroad tracks,  they did not have permission to be on it, authorities said.

"I do believe there is going to be an issue about whether they had permission to be on the tracks," Wayne County Sheriff’s Det. Joe Gardner told the Los Angeles Times

OnceWasAnnie February 27, 2014 at 07:46 AM
An incredibly stupid and senseless death, if the reports are true that the film crew had permission to be near the railroad tracks but not on them. Also, what the hell was wrong with the film crew that they didn't hear the train whistle? I'm assuming there was a train whistle? Stupid, stupid, stupid.
Octo Slash February 27, 2014 at 08:35 AM
Trains are heavier and faster than can be comprehended. This train might have been on the brakes for a mile or more before it struck the crew. As for not hearing a whistle, the wind blowing the wrong way will get you killed, as it can carry even a train whistle's big sound directly away from you. All the time you hear about someone killed by a train and you think, 'How could that happen?' but fact is, most people killed by trains are in their cars, and they figure they can beat the train, but when you're in a car looking sideways at a train, there's almost no way for your brain to calculate the train's speed. Obviously.

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