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Gilligan’s Island’s Alan Hale Hid A Set Injury From The Cast And Crew For Weeks – SlashFilm

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When Schwartz finally asked Hale about his wrist, he received a simple yet shocking answer. “‘Oh, I broke it a few weeks ago,” Hale said. It was his sense of professionalism that prevented Hale from reporting his injury. It seemed he just wanted to take care of his arm himself. This was during the season one wrap party, mind you, so Hale had been filming with a broken wrist for weeks. Schwartz recalled asking “How did you manage to haul coconuts and lift Bob Denver with a broken arm?” Hale just replied, “It wasn’t easy.” Ouch. It was then that Hale was taken immediately to the doctor and outfitted with a cast up to his elbow. From what I have been able to gather, Hale made a full recovery. 

This wasn’t the only time Hale got injured on set either. In the episode “Angel on the Island” (December 12, 1964), the castaways agree to fund a future stage play as a favor to Ginger (Tina Louise), an actress who misses performing. In one scene, Gilligan (Bob Denver) carries a bamboo ladder over his shoulder, clumsily bumping into things in his own inimitable fashion. He eventually stumbles right into the Skipper’s face, and all the rungs of the ladder snap over his neck. To achieve the slapstick stunt, the rungs on the bamboo ladder were sliced to break away. 

Sadly, the cuts were made at an angle, causing one of them to break into a pointed shape. The ladder poked into Hale’s ear, cutting him. A handy video essay by Rick Nineg contains more details about the injury, as well as on-set photos showing that Hale was indeed wearing a bandage on his ear. 

Hale suffered for his art. We should appreciate his sacrifices. 

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