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The Most Dangerous Movie Stunts of All Time

08 March 2023

The Most Dangerous Movie Stunts of All Time

With our new Wing Walking Experience becoming the latest addition to our extensive hangar Flying Experiences, and with the 2023 Oscars just around the corner this Sunday (12th March), we decided to celebrate this exhilarating experience by looking back at some extreme stunts performed in the air for movies with little help from special effects.

These stunts have not only wowed audiences but also showcased the bravery of the stunt performers who risked their lives to create unforgettable movie moments which we could all enjoy while eating our popcorn and sitting comfortably in our chairs.

So, strap in and climb aboard, as takes you through some of the most spectacular stunts ever completed for your own cinematic pleasure.

  • Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation (2015) - Tom Cruise Clings to an Airbus A400M Military Transport Plane During Takeoff

Tom Cruise is famously known for completing many of his own movies' stunts himself and has been involved in plenty that involve planes.

However, we felt this scene was a piece of cinematic art coupled with extreme bravery on his part. In this heart-stopping scene, Tom Cruise's character clings to the exterior of an Airbus A400M military transport plane during take-off and ascension to an altitude of 5,000 feet.

Cruise was securely strapped in with the help of safety harnesses and various wires, but you have to admire the nerve of the actor as he fights to hold on to the aeroplane while being buffeted by the extreme winds created during take-off.

  • The Dark Knight Rises (2012) - Mid-Air Plane-to-Plane Transfer and destruction of the plane

Christopher Nolan is famed for his mind-bending artwork on the screen and this stunt took place during the opening scenes of 'The Dark Knight Rises' which involved a mid-air plane-to-plane transfer from a large transport plane to a smaller private plane and then the destruction of the smaller plane while it was being towed.

The stuntman performed this feat using a wire rig, which allowed them to move between the planes as they flew in close proximity to each other. No CGI is involved! They then had to drop down the plane at the right moment to help the cinematographer catch the moments when the dangling plane was destroyed.

  • Iron Man 3 (2013) - Freefall Without Parachute

In "Iron Man 3," the visual effects team hired the Red Bull Skydiving team to help them perform the freefall stunt from an aeroplane without a parachute.

The actual scene captures the suspense of the moment as the team, dressed in civilian clothing, plummeted through the air with supposedly nothing to break their fall.

The reason why the Red Bull Skydiving team were recruited was to help make the scene look more realistic. They reportedly rehearsed the scene countless times with one of the members performing the part of Iron Man, and another was the cameraman!

The CGI all came after the take as the visual effects team worked on the background and the plane to help with continuity. The art and craft that went into this was one of the reasons why we picked in to be included on our list.

  • Top Gun: Maverick (2022) - Low-Level Flying and Aerobatic Manoeuvres

OK, we had to go back to Tom Cruise for our final fill of aerobatic stunts! In "Top Gun: Maverick", Tom Cruise performed low-level flying and aerobatic manoeuvres in an F-18 fighter jet, capturing the thrill and excitement of air combat.

Cruise, a licensed pilot himself, always said that if they were going to make a sequel, then it would have to be shot in real jets. So, when you see that actor, 50ft inverted and going over a ridge at 580 mph, those really are their true reactions to the scene. In fact, all of the actors had to go through extensive training to help prepare their bodies for the flying experiences they were about to be involved in.

Thankfully, you won't have to experience or perform these stunts yourself, however you can recreate your own 10 minute wing walking display with our special Wing Walking Packages. You can always ask your family members to film it and present you with your own golden statue at the end. Visit our Aerobatic Flight Experiences page to browse and book from our open Gift Vouchers.

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