Get ready "Strike Back" fans, director Michael J. Bassett is back at the helm for the final two episodes of Season 3.
I'm calling Episode 9 "Stunts on a Train" for an over-the-top series of stunts that last nearly half the episode.
In the episode, airing at 9 p.m. CT Oct. 11 on Cinemax, Richmond (Michelle Lukes) and Martinez (Milauna Jackson) get intel on an imminent biological attack. Locke (Robson Green) drops Scott (Sullivan Stapleton), Stonebridge (Philip Winchester) and Martinez onto a moving train to stop the terrorist plot. (See photos from the episode here.)
The train sequence, which you can get a taste of in the behind-the-scenes video below, and the helicopter stunt that begins right after the exclusive sneak peek below, took four days to film, Winchester said. He and Stapleton did all the stunt work after rehearsing the helicopter-train stunts at 25, 40 and 60 kilometers per hour.
"It was really intense, but we are all thrilled about how amazing it looks on screen," he said in a Cinemax release. "It took us four days total to shoot the whole train and helicopter sequence—which is short by film industry standards. Similar sequences take feature films about 4-6 weeks to shoot."
Bassett, who claims its his life work to find stunts that his actors refuse to do, believes the action sequences are more authentic if the actors are doing them. (Read more from Bassett here.) Winchester and Stapleton are up for anything. Well, almost. In the video above filmed at San Diego Comic-Con, Winchester talks about the one time he said "no" to Bassett this season.
Bassett doesn't like to skimp when it comes to the show's action scenes, which he thinks they should be movie quality.
"The audience is very familiar with huge action, which costs $200 million," he said at San Diego Comic-Con in July. "You turn on the TV are you expecting that? Hell yeah, you should definitely expect it. You should expect to watch something when you go, 'Holy shit.'"
Stapleton was still shaking his head about the intense helicopter-train sequence of Episode 9 at Comic-Con. He gives a blow-by-blow account of the stunts in the video below. It's spoilery, so you could wait to watch until after the episode. But come back, it's funny.
The new episode also brings back Amy-Leigh Hickman as Kamali's daughter, Ester, whom Scott has pledged to protect. Listen to Stapleton's comments about the actress in my preview to last week's episode.
If you can't see the interview videos, please click here for my YouTube page.
"Strike Back" ends it third season Oct. 18. Beginning Oct. 25, Cinemax will air the six-episode original season of the British series, calling it "Strike Back: Origins."
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