What does a Stunt Performer do?
Stunt Performers perform supervised stunts which are overseen by Stunt Action Co-coordinators, who are responsible for stunts across all the filming units involved.
Stunt Performers are highly trained and qualified professionals. They usually have some prior experience of working on film sets as extras, walk on’s actors or runners. They are employed by film production companies to take actors' places when dangerous or specialised actions are specified in the script, or to perform roles requiring specific skills, e.g. martial arts, diving, boxing, etc. They duplicate as closely as possible the Actors' appearance and body language while in character, so that stunt scenes can be edited seamlessly into the overall action. They are subject to stringent checks, in order to verify that they can carry out the work effectively and safely.
Will I need a qualification?
You will have to gain considerable amounts of training and experience at considerable cost to become a Stunt Performer. In order to be accredited by the JISC, you must provide evidence of qualifications to the required standard in six or more of the categories listed below, one of which must be in Group A.
Fighting – Categories: Martial Arts, Boxing
Falling – Categories: Trampolining, High Diving
Riding and Driving – Categories: Horses, Cars, Motorcycles
Agility and Strength – Categories: Gymnastics, Rock Climbing
Water – Categories: Swimming, Sub Aqua
You must have qualifications in at least four of the groups and you should be trained in no more than two categories in one group.
You’ll also need at least one year's experience in each qualification. Throughout your career, you’ll need to keep your skills and qualifications up to date.