It’s a given that combining actors and real, functioning weaponry is a little like combining poodles and microwaves: put them together and bad stuff’s gonna happen. It doesn’t matter if it’s a gun, a sword, a bow or a knife: Give a thespian a movie prop and he’ll save the world. Give him a real weapon and he’ll blow away the cameraman and/or lose an appendage. But even at that, this might be one of the most bizarre showbiz weapon whoopsies I’ve ever seen.

From the story:

_An actor slit his throat on stage when the prop knife for his suicide scene turned out to be a real one. Daniel Hoevels, 30, slumped over with blood pouring from his neck while the audience broke into applause at the “special effect”. Police are investigating whether the knife was a mistake or a murder plot. They are questioning the rest of the cast, and backstage hands with access to props; they will also carry out DNA tests. Things went wrong at Vienna’s Burgtheater as Hoevels’ character went to “kill himself” in the final scene of Friedrich Schiller’s Mary Stuart, about Mary Queen of Scots, on Saturday night

It was only when he did not get up to take a bow that anyone realised something had gone wrong.The knife was reportedly bought at a local shop; one possibility is that the props staff forgot to blunt its blade. “The knife even still had the price tag on it,” an investigator said.

After emergency treatment at a hospital, Hoevels declared that the show must go on, and returned to the stage on Sunday night with a bandage tied around his neck, ready to once again meet his mock demise._

Yes, you read that right: he actually slit his own throat.

Mr. Hoevels obviously failed to read Chapter 4, Section 3C of Thespianism for Dummies (Taking One’s Own Life for Maximum Dramatic Effect) which clearly states… “prior to scenes in which you will be slitting your own throat with a dummy knife, take a quick second to ensure the knife really is a prop. If however, you fail to take this precaution and subsequently discover while on stage that your blade is not in fact, a prop, remember to utilize the acting skills previously covered in Chapter 2 (Contusion-free Confrontation Techniques for Stage and Screen) and merely pretend to slit your throat without actually touching it to your skin.”

OK, so I just made that up. But honestly, how the hell do you slit your own throat? I know that laws concerning edged weapons in the UK have gotten completely wonky in the past few years. I mean, it’s become a hassle to even carry your lightsaber any more but has it come to the point (pun intended) where guys are so unfamiliar with “things that might hurt if misused” that they don’t think to check the edge on a knife? Or are actors just universally stupid?