The "Pirates of the Caribbean" actor took to Instagram on Friday (20Nov20) to announce stuntman Zach Hudson, who performed all the swashbuckling moves as Orlando's character Will Turner in the film franchise, is struggling after a diagnosis with the nervous system disease amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.
"Zach was my stunt double while shooting #piratesofthecaribbean and always had a smile on his face whatever the challenge before him was," Orlando captioned the pictures he shared of himself with Zach and his two daughters. "He is currently bravely fighting ALS which is progressing much faster than expected."
"If you happen to be a fan of the movie and/or me please follow the link in my bio for ways you could be a blessing for this wonderful family. Wishing you all health and happiness as we move thru these difficult days. Thank you."
"New Girl" actress Zooey Deschanel also posted about Zach's tragic diagnosis on her Instagram page, noting the stuntman's wife Monica Braunger Hudson has served as her own stunt double for over a decade.
"This is my stunt double of 10+ years- Monica Braunger Hudson," she wrote alongside a snap of the pair dressed in identical outfits on set on Thursday. "If you love Jess from New Girl, then you love Monica, she was a huge part of bringing so many comedic moments to life. She met her wonderful stuntman husband Zach on the set of New Girl. Tragically her husband was diagnosed with ALS earlier this year and because of covid, they're unable to work and in need of help with expenses for treatment, equipment and bills."
"On top of all this she's looking after her two very young daughters. If you have a few dollars to spare please consider donating. Thank you!"
The Zach and Monica's Fight Against ALS fundraiser has already attracted donations totalling $64,000 (£48,000) towards the $100,000 (£75,000) goal as of press time. Donations can be made here: gofundme.com.