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327 votes
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How did they make cars fall apart in old movies?

The 'cab' is hinged round the bottom of the box structure, probably released by Keaton at the appropriate moment, and very likely sprung to assist the demolition. The rest is just balanced on top and ...
Tetsujin's user avatar
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115 votes
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How was this scene shot without hurting Charlie Chaplin?

Well, I have a theory about how this scene might have been filmed, but I have no sources to confirm this as it is a very old movie. This rock can be a fake one, because using a real one will ...
A J's user avatar
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69 votes
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Why is the swordfight in The Princess Bride so good?

Cary Elwes's As You Wish: Inconceivable Tales from the Making of The Princess Bride gives a lot of detail about why the sword fight turned out so well. Neither Elwes nor Mandy Patinkin had a sword-...
Kyralessa's user avatar
  • 1,607
64 votes

Why is the swordfight in The Princess Bride so good?

Other answers have focused on the technical side of the fencing. As you'll no doubt find on YouTube breakdowns, a number of elements of this are clearly not pure combat. Most obviously, if they ...
Graham's user avatar
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55 votes
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What is this dog really biting in The Thing?

No, the dog definitely didn't chew a hole in a real fence. Update: Word of God answer from Producer Stuart Cohen and John Carpenter!!! John Carpenter: The fence was made out of edible material. ...
Wad Cheber's user avatar
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55 votes

Do they really crash super cars in action movies?

For Casino Royale, yes and no: At the time of filming, Aston Martin were still in the final phases of designing the DBS. The scene involving the car crash was devised using an Aston Martin DB9 that ...
Michael Lorton's user avatar
45 votes

Did Hugh Jackman really tattoo his own finger with a pen in The Fountain?

It's really, really, really unlikely. "Cut, reset. First positions please. Going again." What would they do for take 2? No-one ever gets it in the first take[1]. It's almost certainly a ...
Tetsujin's user avatar
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39 votes
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Do they really crash super cars in action movies?

It's very broad to say yes or no. But no, they don't. They use shells, stripped down frames, with standard engines, but with the appropriate paneling to make it look like the real thing. The inside ...
cde's user avatar
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39 votes
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How do they shoot flaming human scenes?

The stuntman/stuntwoman wears a special flame-retardant suit under their costume. In addition, any skin which is not covered by the suit gets coated with a special gel which is flame-resistant. ...
Johnny Bones's user avatar
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38 votes
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How was this scene in Jurassic World shot?

The director Colin Trevorrow said it was all real. Well, up to the dinosaur part, they haven't figured out how to get around the AHA rules. The stunts for the kill scene were done by [Zara Young's ...
cde's user avatar
  • 68k
37 votes

How was this scene shot without hurting Charlie Chaplin?

In addition to the fake rock theory by @AJ, it is quite possible that the rock did not travel the entire distance it appeared to. Once the rock disappears off screen, there could have been some ...
Matt Butler's user avatar
33 votes
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How was the fire stunt done in Cape Fear (1991)?

I can't provide a solid answer with citations on this - but it does look quite possible it was actually DeNiro doing the opening shot of this stunt. On the insurance aspect, you might have to ask Tom ...
Tetsujin's user avatar
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30 votes
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How was this glass shattering scene shot without getting any injury to the head?

Very simply - don't use real glass. Movies have long used sugar glass. Literally, a substance that looks like glass but is just made from sugar & water, heated until it turns into a kind of hard, ...
Tetsujin's user avatar
  • 53.3k
27 votes

How do they shoot flaming human scenes?

For that movie it was probably using a pyro gel. It's a special gel that burns at a lower temperature (800F) and doesn't spread much, so it can be applied more precisely. To protect themselves the ...
Luciano's user avatar
  • 7,887
26 votes

Do they really crash super cars in action movies?

Here's a good link regarding the filming for Need for Speed. In Need for Speed at least, they used real cars. Besides Need for Speed, they'll frequently use replicas of the shells of cars to crash. ...
Jonathan Hall's user avatar
23 votes

How was this scene shot without hurting Charlie Chaplin?

Even if this particular trick is rare, it's conceptually similar to hanging scenes, which are abundant in westerns. In fake hanging, the typical trick is to attach the rope to the hidden harness while ...
IMil's user avatar
  • 699
17 votes

How was this glass shattering scene shot without getting any injury to the head?

There are also commercial silicone and urathane (plastic) products that can be molded into clear glass-looking sheets. Add in a sound effect and you're done.
Paulie_D's user avatar
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17 votes
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In National Velvet why didn't they use a stunt double for Elizabeth Taylor?

They did Alice van Springsteen was the stunt double for Ms Taylor in National Velvet Her first work as a film stuntwoman came in Will Rogers' last movie, "In Old Kentucky" (1935). A member ...
Paulie_D's user avatar
  • 136k
13 votes

How was this scene shot without hurting Charlie Chaplin?

The key is to watch Chaplin's legs and the rope. As the rock goes off-screen and the rope is getting close to taut, his knees flex. At that point he clearly jumps into the water, with enough style (...
Graham's user avatar
  • 2,868
11 votes

Why is the swordfight in The Princess Bride so good?

Perhaps not sleeping on the couch, but they did employ the guy considered to be the best in the business. From Wikipedia - Bob Anderson Robert James Gilbert Anderson (15 September 1922 – 1 January ...
Tetsujin's user avatar
  • 53.3k
10 votes
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How do they shoot a scene in which a character falls downstair?

Well, basically, someone pushes someone down the stairs. While the camera is running. Lately, there is special effects to digitally matte a characters face on a stuntman if they want to go an extra ...
cde's user avatar
  • 68k
8 votes

How was this scene shot without hurting Charlie Chaplin?

Perhaps the rope is loosely fastened to the rock, and detaches when the rock has reached its limit.
Pete's user avatar
  • 87
8 votes
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Are Top Gun 2 dogfights & airplane maneuvers real?

Mostly According to John Hamm... “We’re shooting the movie in, I think, 6K,” Hamm explained (via JoBlo) at the premiere of Amazon’s Good Omens. “So it’s incredibly hi-def. The aerial footage is mind-...
Paulie_D's user avatar
  • 136k
7 votes

How are injections given without injuring actors?

All three types of techniques are used. Fake appendages. You can use a real needle in these. Common when the appendage in question will be changed or explode or anything. All practical effects. CGI. ...
cde's user avatar
  • 68k
7 votes
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Why were two people — a body double and a stunt double — used for a character who barely appears in “The Mandalorian?”

Pay-scales. Simple economics. The stunt double would cost three times as much as the body double. If only a day or two of stunts was required and the rest of the time simple walking/standing was all ...
Tetsujin's user avatar
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6 votes

Do they really crash super cars in action movies?

Others have answered about the specifics of cars being wrecked. But in general, when you are talking about big budget films where the potential box office returns will be in the millions and billions, ...
Giacomo1968's user avatar
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6 votes
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How are car drag scenes filmed without hurting anyone?

Usually these kinds of stunts are done by some trained stunt men (dupe for the hero), they wear protective gear like lunatic vests. Mostly, you can see car drag scenes on a flat surface, off-road (...
Anoop Mayampilly Muraleedharan's user avatar
6 votes

What is this kind of stunt called and what is the highest record for it

The name of the stunt is a Free Fall. As opposed to using a bungee cord or parachute or cable restraint mechanism, a Free Fall stunt uses only a air bag or other type of landing platform to protect ...
cde's user avatar
  • 68k
6 votes
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How are scenes shot in burning buildings?

Bear in mind that even before CGI there were techniques to use different footage sources to make the final composite scene - so "the fire was added afterwards" is always a valid method. There are, ...
Tetsujin's user avatar
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