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How Hollywood Makes Stunt Car Scenes

Cars have become a necessary part of life for most Americans today. Since more people own cars, more cars will be on the road congesting traffic. What once was exciting has faded into the dull mornings we associate with commuting or other traffic-filled activities.

Wouldn’t it be amazing if there were no cars on the street? We could go race the old familiar route to work and infuse it with pure energy and delight. Now imagine on the way to work there’s a huge ramp and you speed into it at the perfect angle, sending you flying through flaming hoops and because you’re the coolest driver ever you land face down with the sprezzatura on your face telling us that that was just a speed bump.

That is what stunt driving is about. Hollywood is constantly making greater and greater stunts for us to watch in movies, famously Fast and the Furious. While some are CGI, nothing can beat the real deal, where stunt drivers risk their lives to bring audiences the coolest things you can do with an automobile.

Prepping Vehicles for Stunt Work

Recognizing and knowing the car performing these stunts makes the experience of seeing them do the impossible more impactful for the audience. Making a character out of a car and giving it a personality will cause attachment with the vehicle, so Hollywood makes sure to use the most Iconic cars for their stunts. In a way, the viewers start to root for the car more than the drivers in movies because of all the characters given to them.

The cars used for stunts also have to be modified most of the time. This usually means the frame of the vehicle is heavily reinforced with strong steel, so the drivers are safer. Roll cages are added to the car so if in a situation where the vehicle ends up rolling, those in the vehicle are safe.

Some vehicles aren’t even the vehicles they are supposed to portray. Shells are used often on vehicles meant to be destroyed during a stunt. It wouldn’t make sense to shoot an actual Lamborghini blowing up when you can destroy a fake one and have the same effect in your movie. 

Having a totalled car, whether from stunt driving or from any other cause, can cause a lot of stress. It’s a good thing there are websites along you can use to make some good money off selling a damaged car.

Creating Thrilling Stunts

Driving off a ramp through some hoops is cool and all, but there is not really a complicated narrative in just doing a jump because you want to. Giving a stunt driving scene personality and a purpose elevates it to higher levels and makes the stunt more than just a stunt. A car chase needs work put into it to really sell that the characters on screen are really driving for their lives to make us believe the narrative we are engaging in.

A huge amount of work goes into planning out stunts for movies. Some stunts are even patented before they are even filmed to make sure the great ideas are not stolen in the time they take to produce. The stunt planning is vital to not only produce the stunt but ensure it is carried out.

Some scenes require creative solutions to achieve them. For instance, some scenes require the car to travel at fast speeds backwards. This is usually done by just flipping cars around. The rear windshield is now where the drivers are facing so they can get those perfect reverse driving shots they need for their movie.

There is also the huge logistical problem of how to film great stunts at high speeds. Sometimes a stunt would need cars to get crashed and the best way to capture the collision would be to throw mounting cameras on top of the vehicle. Film crews would need to engineer systems to accommodate recording stunts and each director has their own tricks and ideas on how to film different stunts.

The auditory stimulation we receive while watching stunts also help us in deciding whether or not a scene is cool. How collisions and explosions sound can enhance their impact and having cars sound like mechanical roaring monsters make us believe the almost impossible reality the movie portrays. Music can add character to a stunt and bring all the noises together in blissful harmony.

Car Stunts are a whole world on their own and lucky for us a huge demand for them means more and more ideas of car manipulation are explored each year. No matter what there will always be action movies featuring live car stunts that inspire more people to get into car culture and movie culture. From making the stunts to even the cars, modern stunts take much work to pull off and it is great to live in a world where they exist.


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