Isla Fisher played the role of illusionist and Henley Reeves in the 2013 film Now You See Me. In one scene of this film, her character does a stunt where she has to escape from a water tank in which she is chained. However, Fisher has revealed that the shooting of this scene didn’t go quite right and she actually almost drowned on set.
“I had a near-death experience,” Fisher told On Demand Entertainment. “I was in a tank of water, my character is submerged in a tank, and piranhas are dropped on my head. We filmed this scene over a span of about three and a half days, and while I was sitting there that tank, I did have these quick release magnetic things on my handcuffs, but the chain between my ankles and my wrists couldn’t be broken. That got stuck under the slat and that’s why I was stuck too.”
“Yes I was very scared,” continues the Australian actress. “I was banging against the tank and yelling ‘let me out!’ but everyone thought I was just acting great. They thought I was being Meryl Streep in the tank, when in reality I was drowning. All I could think about was that I would then be lying there on the autopsy table, all bloated in a swimsuit and heels, and how humiliating that would be.
Lots of safety protocols but no word or signal for when things go wrong
They did have all the safety procedures through, there was a button that emptied the water tank in 70 seconds. They had all those procedures, but I realized that we had forgotten one basic thing, which is that you need a safety word or signal for when things go wrong.”
Fortunately, Fisher eventually managed to free herself and was able to recount the incident. “The director, Louis Letterier, was still saying to me, ‘Wow. I’ve worked with a lot of actors on big action movies, and you’re the only one who did all the stunts yourself.’ To that I said I didn’t know I had a choice in that, I thought you just have to do it,” Fisher said.