Theme parks are supposed to be places where guests can have thrilling experiences that appear to be dangerous, but in reality, are perfectly safe. But sometimes accidents happen, and so do real injuries. That can happen to the guests if something goes wrong with an attraction, but it can also occur to the people working in the park. This has been shown through a Universal Studios stunt performer who has been hospitalized following a tragic turn of events during the show WaterWorld—A Live Sea War Spectacular.
KTLA reports that the incident took place during an afternoon performance of the WaterWorld stunt show on Monday. As part of the performance, a stuntman falls from a high tower and splashes into the water below. However, he did not resurface as expected. According to officials, the man was given CPR and was conscious before being transported to the hospital, but his current condition is unknown.
Needless to say, this is a terrifying development. The Waterworld stunt show is one of the more popular attractions at Universal Studios Hollywood, it’s performed to full houses multiple times a day and has been since 1995, debuting only three months after the film it was based on. The fact that the show continues to run to this day shows just how popular it is with guests.
The show loosely follows the events of the 1995 Kevin Costner movie. A large floating stage is surrounded by water, and boats and jet skis fly through the water while actors get in simulated fights, fall from heights, and even do stunts with fire. It’s a pretty exciting show that takes place at three other Universal Parks around the world. The version at Universal Studios Beijing opened with the park in 2021, showing just how much longevity the show has had.
The incident is reportedly “under review” at Universal Studios Hollywood as the park attempts to figure out exactly what went wrong. These stunts are performed multiple times a day by professional stunt people, the same men and women working the show regularly appear in major TV and films, so they are absolutely professionals who know what they’re doing.
The Waterworld show remained closed for the rest of Monday and is still listed as “temporarily closed” today on the theme park’s website as of this writing. Unless a specific cause for this incident can be easily discovered and dealt with, we can expect the show will likely remain closed for some time while the investigation into the incident proceeds. It’s even possible that Waterworld has seen its last performance at Universal Studios Hollywood, but even if that’s the case it will probably be quite some time before it'll be confirmed.