Filming for the 16th season of “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” got underway on Thursday, and it was a rough day at the office for Kaitlin Olson.
Rob McElhenney, who’s married to Olson, shared a photo on social media on Thursday afternoon showing his wife with a black eye. It looks bad enough that you might mistake it for mascara running at first glance.
“Well it’s the first day of shooting so, of course, the lady of the house ran into a wall before she came to set,” McElhenney tweeted.
The official account for the show chimed in with a quippy response, “The wall started it.”
On Instagram, McElhenney praised the show’s makeup artist for covering up Olson’s black eye, but didn’t elaborate on the nature of his wife’s injury.
How does one just … run into a wall, orbital-bone first? Some commenters wondered in jest whether this could be McElhenney’s “cover-your-ass” post, which obviously is not a joking matter.
As it turns out, Olson just has a gruesome history of getting severely injured in frightening and ridiculous ways. When she was 12 years old, she was in a serious bicycle accident that resulted in a fractured skull. She had to undergo reconstructive surgery for her face as well. She told Glamour:
Yeah, that was a doozy. I still have a hole in my head. It was the size of a lime. Now it’s the size of a quarter. It was bad. I had my head shaved, and this was all going into junior high school. I also smashed my face and had to have surgery. It was bad, it was really, really bad. Honestly, it’s probably the greatest thing that ever happened to me. That was a real serious source of adversity that took years to fight back from that. No 12 or 13-year-old girl wants to walk into her first day of junior high with a swollen face and a shaved head and a [huge] scar. It was bad.
Before the start of season 4, Olson also broke her back on the 4th of July when a neighbor picked her up and accidentally dropped her onto a sidewalk. The injury required accommodations for her on set.
In another incident, Olson told Yahoo News she went to the emergency room after she ripped her leg “completely wide open on a steel grate that we were running on” during filming. Glenn Howerton apparently got squeamish and ran away because there was a ton of blood and Olson said her shin bone was visible.
Just this week, Olson and McElhenney were joking on “The Always Sunny Podcast” about how they fell in love with each other. In the past, they’ve said that they initially kept their romance a secret from their cast mates. They married in 2008 and have two children together.
It seems safe to say that Olson must be a clumsy, walking injury waiting to happen — and a pretty tough cookie.
The good news for fans of the show is that production has officially begun on the new season of America’s longest-running TV sitcom. McElhenney shared some video from the Paddy’s Pub set on Instagram Thursday, with screenshots preserved by Bleeding Cool.
There’s no timeline yet for the premiere of season 16, but with any luck, it may be coming by the end of 2023. McElhenney, Olson and Charlie Day talked about the writing process on the most recent episode of the podcast, which you can watch below.