Gary Oldman is fearing the next 'big one' after living through the Northridge earthquake in Los Angeles in 1994.

The actor was shooting Murder in the First when the shaker hit at 4.31am on 17 January - and he and his castmates had to dash for their lives from the set.

Recalling the scary moment the earthquake started during an appearance on U.S. chat show Conan on Tuesday (22Jul14), Oldman recalls, "We were filming, night shooting, on the epicenter on the night that it happened... It sounded like a locomotive being dragged up the side of a mountain. I can't describe the noise that it made and the building sort of went 20 feet that way and then 20 feet that way.

"I was thrown against the set. We had just cut and we were behind the scenery, I was having a drink of coffee, and then this thing hit... I know you're supposed to stand under a doorway... so I'm standing under a doorway, and realised, actually, it was a fake doorway.

"I thought, 'This is not good...' so I made a dash for the exit and one of the crew, he flipped the generator switch so at least we had light, and we were all dressed in '30s clothing, so it was very a bizarre image of (us) all running to an exit in our period clothing.

"In the initial hit, I had been thrown and I had lost my glasses... and as I was running to save my life, I saw them on the ground and I sort of scooped them up. I thought, 'I must save those...' They're not even real glasses, but it went through my mind, 'They're period, they're the only pair'.

"We got outside and then you realise those huge camera trucks had been bouncing round the car park, my trailer had collapsed, and as the sun came up you saw that sort of orange dust cloud. I think the mountains moved a foot closer. It was something. I wouldn't want to repeat it."