Jeremy Renner Details the Moments Leading up to and Following His Accident

He reveals parts of his near-death experience for the first time on James Corden’s new show.

Jackie Kolgraf
February 1, 2024

On the debut episode of James Corden’s new exclusive interview show, This Life of Mine with James Corden — where guests pick the possessions, places, people, music, memories and more that made them who they are — special guest Jeremy Renner shared never-before-revealed details about his near-death accident on New Years Day 2023.

After choosing “titanium” for his defining possession, as the metal now makes up 15–20% of his body after the accident (“It will be with me forever. It’s like half of my ribs, right?” he said), Jeremy took James through the moments leading up to and immediately following the accident at his rural Nevada home, as well as his healing journey.

This Life of Mine with James Corden on SiriusXM - Special Guest: Jeremy Renner; Stream the unforgettable debut episode - Listen Now button

Jeremy Renner’s Place: Lake Tahoe

Jeremy considers Nevada his “happy place,” even after the accident. He started skiing there as a kid and became really invested in the community as an adult, using it as his main residence for the past decade. He was no stranger to the extreme weather they experienced that New Years that led to his accident.

“We’re kind of locked down in a giant three-, four-day storm,” Jeremy recalled. “It happens often up there, but this was a pretty gnarly one. It was like snowmageddon. Everything was shut down. We were without power for two to three days. But we were all having fun. There was like 25 of us, celebrating post-Christmas into New Years. And New Year’s Eve was pretty snowy. And we finally got a break in the weather. And like 8-10 feet, I think, fell, and so we had to go kind of clear some snow.”

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He continued, “This is a little bit more snow than typical. And then the power out — we’re kind of used to that. But, you know, going on the third day, it’s starting to get not fun. So when the sun came out, it was great. Everybody’s very, very happy. Everyone’s gonna get the kids skiing.

“There’s cars that they thought that could make it. They got stuck. Snowmobiles got stuck. So that really trapped us all in no matter what. So I had to get the snowcat,” he said. Specifically, a PistenBully snow groomer. “It’s super reliable because it floats a little bit more on the snow … It’s a big, big monstrous tank. And it’s super, super dependable for this kind of stuff. So I kept pulling all the things out of the way of the driveway ’cause they’re all stuck. So once I got almost all of those out of the way, I was gonna go then plow the driveway. But pulling the last truck out is where the accident happened.”

Jeremy then recounts exactly how the accident occurred and what he experienced, having never lost consciousness for more than a few minutes if at all while suffering from eight broken ribs, a broken eye socket, a collapsed lung, and more injuries. He actually credits his survival to remaining conscious and forcing himself to keep breathing.

Why near-death felt “glorious”

“Recovery was like a one-way road,” he told James. “I wasn’t going to come back from death — which I thought was glorious, by the way … You know, having a near-death experience. I was probably gone on the ice for a minute, at least … I was there for 45 minutes, and I got pretty exhausted breathing. I started getting 18 beats per minute, was my heart rate, and that’s probably almost from death. And you kind of fade. I don’t know if it’s fading in consciousness or just fading out of, like, heart stoppage.”

But at that moment, Jeremy felt like “all life was grand.” He said, “All life just got better. Everything you know and you love and loved in your life is a two-way street now, and they’re there with you. It’s an energetic thing. There’s no time, place or space or color or anything. It’s just a known peace. And that peace was so glorious — I don’t know why ‘orgasmic’ pops into my head, because it’s not that stimulating. It’s just like a peaceful excitement, and it’s hard to express.”

He compared it to the “beautiful, exhilarating peace” of childhood feelings around Disneyland or Christmas.

“I saw light strands that sort of connected me visually,” he added. “There was a visual, it’s that. ‘Cause you’re just constantly connected, always, forever.”

He was never afraid of death, Jeremy explained, but after experiencing that, now he’s really not afraid.

In fact, he’s kind of excited for it.

Jeremy shares the life-defining movie he’s watched over 500 times, his most-cherished childhood memory with his father, the two people who’ve affected his life the most, and more in the full interview, now available to stream on the SiriusXM app. New episodes of This Life of Mine with James Corden premiere Thursdays at 5pm ET exclusively on Stars (Ch. 109).