In recently released Netflix horror-comedy, Drew Barrymore plays a suburban wife and mother who winds up becoming one of the walking dead, and must feast on human flesh and blood in order to survive.
While this darkly comic premise would seemingly put the actors playing her character’s victims in danger, Barrymore admits in an interview with Us Weekly that she was the one who experienced peril, revealing she “almost died” while filming the series.
As series creator Victor Fresco explains, in one scene Barrymore’s character jumps on a man’s back in order to kill him, but while rehearsing the scene instead accidentally slipped off and banged her skull on concrete.
The actor, Fresco tells Us Weekly, “was a wide guy and Drew didn’t get a great grip. Then he held onto her legs as she slipped off, and so she just pivoted down all the way and just hit her head. I thought, ‘That’s it. We’ve killed Drew Barrymore.'”
“It was f***ing terrifying,” Barrymore confirms. “It was very serious. I’ve never had a feeling like that in my life.”
According to Fresco, paramedics arrived on the set and rushed the star to a nearby hospital, where she spent two days being tested via MRIs and CAT scans, with production forced to shut down in the meantime.
Thankfully Barrymore only suffered a concussion from the accident, but when she finally returned to the set a week later she still had to film the scene that led to her injury. “Coming back, it was scary,” Barrymore admitted. “Everyone was really tense.”
Luckily, she made it through the scene with no accidents or injuries, and Barrymore says the whole incident opened her eyes to how much the cast and crew supported her after her injury.
“I love that this group of people, who aren’t family necessarily, are coming together and care about my well-being,” she remembered thinking at the time. “It was a nice moment where you see the good in people.”
In this extended interview with ET Canada’s Sangita Patel, Barrymore and co-star Timothy Olyphant are joined by Fresco to talk zombies, “The Santa Clarita Diet” and George and Amal Clooney expecting twins.