'Transformers' star Shia LaBeouf opens up about his injuries | EW.com

Movies | Inside Movies

'Transformers' star Shia LaBeouf opens up about his injuries

Shialabeoufhand_l

Shialabeoufhand_lIt took moments for Shia LaBeouf’s Ford truck to flip over during a wee-hours-of-the-morning car accident last July in West Hollywood. But nearly nine months later, the damage to LaBeouf’s left hand, so badly crushed that one finger had no bone left in it, still hasn’t entirely healed. LaBeouf now says it probably never will. During an exclusive interview with EW about the hotly anticipated June 24 sequel Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, the 22-year-old star reveals that he expects to get back only “about 80-something percent” of his left hand’s dexterity.

Though LaBeouf was not to blame for the accident, which according to published accounts occurred when another driver allegedly ran a red light, the actor refused a breathalyzer test at the scene and was cited with a misdemeanor DUI. In late September, the L.A. County D.A.’s office declined to prosecute LaBeouf, citing a lack of evidence, but in January, his driver’s license was suspended for one year. (That’s a virtually automatic consequence for anyone who refuses blood-alcohol-level testing after an accident.) A few hours after the crash, LaBeouf underwent a four-hour, early-morning surgical procedure on his left hand. A few weeks later – against the advice of at least one doctor, LaBeouf says – the actor returned to the Transformers set with a specially designed prosthetic bandage that had to be rewritten into the plot line. Additional surgery was postponed till after the film wrapped.

In his interview with EW (after the jump), LaBeouf talks about his recovery, another potentially calamitous accident that happened on the set, the advice he got from his former costar Harrison Ford, and how it felt to have the fate of the $200 million Transformers sequel hang on him.

addCredit(“Paul Drinkwater/AP Images”)

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: What’s been going on with your hand since the first surgery?

SHIA LABEOUF: I’ve had screws and plates put in. They put a screw in
one of my knuckles. And they shaved a piece of bone off my hip and made
a [bone for my] finger out of it.

Was your hand out the window of the vehicle when it got injured?

Yeah.

How is the hand now?

I’m on my third surgery. That’s coming up in a week or two [from April
2]. My middle finger is still crooked as a f—ing noodle, so they’ve
gotta straighten it out and put a screw in it.

How long will it take to recover from this third surgery?

I imagine like two months and I’ll be back on my feet.

How much usage will you get back of your left hand?

Probably about 80-something percent. I’ll be able to make a fist again.
There’s a knuckle I’ll never be able to move again, but that’s probably
the only permanent damage, other than the scarring.

What do you remember of the initial surgical procedure?

The first voice I heard when I came out of surgery was Harrison’s.
Harrison [Ford] called me on the phone and said, “Hey, are you okay?” I
said, “Yeah, I’m good.” He said, “Well, then you need to get back to
work.” I said, “Are you serious?” He said, “That’s the way this cookie
crumbles.” So I went back to work. The show doesn’t stop for anybody.

And of course Harrison, your costar in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of
the Crystal Skull
, shot most of the second Indy movie with a seriously
screwed-up back. How soon did you go back to work?

I was only down for two weeks. The average bone healing time is six months.

Did you consider postponing your return to the set at all?

When I came back it was just out of the guilt that I had. I pride
myself on my professionalism, and this is the first issue I’ve ever had
where I wasn’t able to come to set, and it’s f—ing heartbreaking when
you gotta look at your crew. You know, what can you do? You just gotta
grab your balls and move forward. There’s nothing else to do. The thing
that cut deep to the core of me was knowing that there were 65 human
beings [in the crew] who are like family to me, waiting for me to come
back. They were sitting on their asses doing nothing because of my…you
know, my situation. It’s the most intense s— I’ve ever dealt with,
and am still dealing with. I mean, if people look at me like a drunk
a–hole, that’s okay. But I know my family looks at me like a whole
different person, and I know my crew respects me immensely. And at the
end of the day, I can’t do much more.

How debilitating has it been to have no use of your left hand all these months?

It’s hard to do anything. It’s hard to button your pants or brush your
teeth, let alone jump off a three-story building into a pad. This movie
was the most physical thing I’ve ever had to do, and I had to do it
with a broken hand. It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do in my
life. Constantly having to take hits and fall and run through
explosions and get hit and beat up all day. Aside from my hand, I also
got 25 stitches making this movie, in various parts of my body – stuff
that had nothing to do with my hand.

In October, there was a report that you got hit with a prop just above one eye and needed stitches.

I basically stuck a f—ing sharp object through my eyelid.

Michael Bay, your director, says it was a large prop of some kind that
caught you, which he didn’t want to identify or describe because it’s a
plot spoiler. He also says he dropped to his knees as soon as he heard
someone on the set say, “There’s blood.”

They stitched me up in a military hospital. The doctor looks at me and
he holds his thumb and forefinger about an inch apart from one another.
I said, “What is that?” He said, “Blindness.” This is the most insane
s— I’ve ever been a part of.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: What’s been going on with your hand since the first surgery?
SHIA LABEOUF: I’ve had screws and plates put in. They put a screw inone of my knuckles. And they shaved a piece of bone off my hip and madea [bone for my] finger out of it.

Was your hand out the window of the vehicle when it got injured?
Yeah.

How is the hand now?
I’m on my third surgery. That’s coming up in a week or two [from April2]. My middle finger is still crooked as a f—ing noodle, so they’vegotta straighten it out and put a screw in it.

How long will it take to recover from this third surgery?
I imagine like two months and I’ll be back on my feet.

How much usage will you get back of your left hand?
Probably about 80-something percent. I’ll be able to make a fist again.There’s a knuckle I’ll never be able to move again, but that’s probablythe only permanent damage, other than the scarring.

What do you remember of the initial surgical procedure?
The first voice I heard when I came out of surgery was Harrison’s.Harrison [Ford] called me on the phone and said, “Hey, are you okay?” Isaid, “Yeah, I’m good.” He said, “Well, then you need to get back towork.” I said, “Are you serious?” He said, “That’s the way this cookiecrumbles.” So I went back to work. The show doesn’t stop for anybody.

And of course Harrison, your costar in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom ofthe Crystal Skull, shot most of the second Indy movie with a seriouslyscrewed-up back. How soon did you go back to work?
I was only down for two weeks. The average bone healing time is six months.

Did you consider postponing your return to the set at all?
When I came back it was just out of the guilt that I had. I pridemyself on my professionalism, and this is the first issue I’ve ever hadwhere I wasn’t able to come to set, and it’s f—ing heartbreaking whenyou gotta look at your crew. You know, what can you do? You just gottagrab your balls and move forward. There’s nothing else to do. The thingthat cut deep to the core of me was knowing that there were 65 humanbeings [in the crew] who are like family to me, waiting for me to comeback. They were sitting on their asses doing nothing because of my…youknow, my situation. It’s the most intense s— I’ve ever dealt with,and am still dealing with. I mean, if people look at me like a drunka–hole, that’s okay. But I know my family looks at me like a wholedifferent person, and I know my crew respects me immensely. And at theend of the day, I can’t do much more.

How debilitating has it been to have no use of your left hand all these months?

It’s hard to do anything. It’s hard to button your pants or brush yourteeth, let alone jump off a three-story building into a pad. This moviewas the most physical thing I’ve ever had to do, and I had to do itwith a broken hand. It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do in mylife. Constantly having to take hits and fall and run throughexplosions and get hit and beat up all day. Aside from my hand, I alsogot 25 stitches making this movie, in various parts of my body – stuffthat had nothing to do with my hand.

In October, there was a report that you got hit with a prop just above one eye and needed stitches.
I basically stuck a f—ing sharp object through my eyelid.

Michael Bay, your director, says it was a large prop of some kind thatcaught you, which he didn’t want to identify or describe because it’s aplot spoiler. He also says he dropped to his knees as soon as he heardsomeone on the set say, “There’s blood.”
They stitched me up in a military hospital. The doctor looks at me andhe holds his thumb and forefinger about an inch apart from one another.I said, “What is that?” He said, “Blindness.” This is the most insanes— I’ve ever been a part of.