Remember, it’s never the camera department’s fault! I’ll categorize some of them.
I was the camera operator on the Mission: Impossible TV series shot here in Australia. A famous actor who was very, very drunk was handed a large calibre handgun for use in the scene by the armourer, and told it was loaded and to not put his finger on the trigger. This actor had come on set and not seen the actress lying, eyes closed, acting dead with blood all over her head behind him. We cleared the set, and before the slate went on, he accidently fired the 45 Magnum. BANG! He nearly jumped out of his skin. He then turned to see the actress on the sofa, acting dead with blood everywhere, and he thought he had seriously shot her. He fell on his knees in shock and started weeping, saying, “Oh my god, I’ve killed her.”
I was the focus puller on a show filming in Greece. The scene required the beautiful German actress to come up to the male actor and slap him across the face. It was an over-shoulder shot to the actress. She was clearly not smacking him hard enough, so the male lead said to her “come on really hit me, I mean it!”
On take 3, she stepped into shot and hit him very hard. Her expression changed radically at the shock of being so brutal. She frightened herself and her bladder let go.
I was the camera operator on an Australian ‘pioneer’ type series in the 80’s that required water dump tanks to flood a large exterior area and trap our actors down their mineshaft. 2 horses were tied up near by, and the rest of the crew were on a small patch of high ground out of the way. The shot could not be rehearsed, so when they called action the floodwaters were released from the dump tanks. BANG! Water flooded down into our valley and into the underground mine, the horses took fright at all the noise and water, panicked and tore free from their ropes and bolted to the high ground, straight into the waiting people. In the confusion the horses trampled 4 crewmembers who didn’t see them coming.