Stunt drivers need a lot of heart and bravery to be successful in show business, but often it’s even more important to be skillful. Nobody cares that a driver is willing to go down with a crashing motorcycle if the driver can’t stick the landing. Vulture recently spoke to several people involved with major motion picture stunts to talk about the most difficult scenes they ever had to pull off.
The first thing to know is that not everybody is just a stuntman or stuntwoman. There are stunt drivers, stunt coordinators, action designers, stunt performers, and fight coordinators, most of which can exercise various types of stunts and do various types of work.
James Smith was a stunt driver for the 2007 Transformers release with Shia LaBeouf and Megan Fox. The hardest stunt he remembers was driving the old ’70s Camaro on two wheels down a tunnel past the new-generation Camaro. The article explains exactly why driving through a tunnel specifically makes this type of stunt significantly more difficult.
Melissa Stubbs had the responsibility of standing in for Margot Robbie for a stunt in Suicide Squad. Stubbs had to figure out how to make a motorcycle crash look artistic and romantic. So, she wrecked a bunch of Harley-Davidsons until it worked. David Barrett was also tasked with crashing a motorcycle, but this time it was a Ducati in Speed 2. Oh, and he had to wear just a T-shirt and no helmet. He explains the exact process he used to make it happen gracefully enough to avoid any major injuries.
Check out the full piece, which includes several more stunt people and stories, on Vulture.