Director Randall Miller is scheduled to go before a judge on July 22 to answer a charge that he violated his probation by directing a film in Serbia last year.
Miller is on probation in connection with the 2014 death of Sarah Jones, a camera assistant on the crew of “Midnight Rider.” Jones was killed when she and others were struck by a freight train while filming a scene on a train bridge near Jesup, Ga.
After a year of legal wrangling, Miller pleaded guilty in March 2015 to involuntary manslaughter. He served a year in jail, and was ordered not to work as a “director, first assistant director or supervisor with responsibility for safety in any film production” for a period of 10 years.
Miller shot a new film, “Higher Grounds,” in Serbia, the United Kingdom and Colombia last year. The film is now in post-production. Jones’ father, Richard Jones, alerted prosecutors to the new project in early March. Word of the film began to circulate more widely in the Georgia film community in May, prompting further complaints to the prosecutor’s office.
The Georgia Department of Community Supervision — which oversees probationers — concluded on May 29 that Miller had violated his probation.
Miller’s attorney, Ed Garland, told Variety that he always understood Miller’s probation terms to allow him to direct a film, so long as someone else was placed in charge of safety. Jason Allen, the first assistant director, told Variety that he was exclusively responsible for safety on the project.
The Brunswick Judicial Circuit District Attorney’s office and the probation department do not read the term that way, and have asked Wayne County Superior Court Judge Anthony Harrison to find Miller in violation of his probation. The hearing was initially set to be held this Wednesday, but was delayed to July due to technical issues.