The International Stunt Academy is proud to offer a comprehensive guide to the basics of horse stunts for all aspiring stunt riders.
Horse stunts are a thrilling and dynamic aspect of equestrian sports that require precise timing, coordination, and a deep understanding of horse behavior and movements. Whether you're a seasoned rider or just starting out, the following tips will help you get started with horse stunts and lay the foundation for a successful career in this exciting discipline.
Many think they need to be an experienced rider before moving into Horse Stunt work but there are ways to fast track things. We have instructors who are highly skilled in helping anyone rapidly learn, but we also have horses that are trained for this too, and that's something people often overlook ... you have to have the right horse for the type of stunt and environment it is being performed in.
Horse stunts are a challenging and rewarding discipline that require dedication, patience, and a passion for horses. By following these tips and putting in the necessary time and effort, you can develop the skills and confidence you need to become a successful horse stunt rider.
The International Stunt Academy is dedicated to providing its students with the best training in a variety of skills, and swordfighting is no exception. In this article, we'll cover the basics of swordfighting to give you a taste of what you can expect to learn at the Academy.
Swordfighting is a physically demanding discipline that requires strength, coordination, and quick reflexes. It also requires a good understanding of the different types of swords and their uses, as well as the techniques used to wield them effectively.
One of the first things you'll learn about swordfighting is the different types of swords. The most common types of swords used in swordfighting include longswords, rapiers, and sabers. Each type of sword has its own unique characteristics and is used for different purposes. For example, a longsword is designed for cutting and thrusting, while a rapier is designed for quick, precise strikes.
Once you've learned about the different types of swords, you'll move on to learning the basic techniques used in swordfighting. Some of the most important techniques include the thrust, the slash, and the parry. The thrust is a quick, direct attack aimed at the opponent's vital points, while the slash is a powerful, sweeping attack used to disable the opponent's weapon. The parry is a defensive technique used to block an opponent's attack and create an opening for a counterattack.
In addition to learning these basic techniques, you'll also learn more advanced techniques such as footwork, body positioning, and timing. Footwork is important because it helps you maintain balance and mobility during a fight. Body positioning is important because it allows you to maximize your leverage and power, while timing is important because it allows you to control the pace of the fight and make strategic decisions.
Finally, you'll learn about the various strategies used in swordfighting. Some of the most common strategies include the offensive, the defensive, and the counteroffensive. The offensive strategy is focused on attacking the opponent, while the defensive strategy is focused on protecting yourself and avoiding the opponent's attacks. The counteroffensive strategy is focused on using the opponent's own movements against them and taking advantage of their weaknesses.
Swordfighting is a challenging but very rewarding discipline that requires physical and mental toughness. By learning the basics of swordfighting, you'll be well on your way to becoming a skilled performer and also a valuable member of The International Stunt Academy's Stunt Team!
There's a world of great articles and resources to help you understand and explore method acting. Here's some of our top tips to inspire your own research and explorations:
Method Acting: Understanding the Craft
Method acting is a well-known acting technique that has been used by many actors and actresses over the years. It was developed by Konstantin Stanislavski in the early 20th century and has since been adapted and modified by many famous actors and acting teachers.
The basic premise of method acting is that the actor should strive to become the character they are playing. This is done by using personal experiences and emotions to bring depth and authenticity to the performance. The goal is to create a believable and emotionally charged performance that resonates with the audience.
One of the key aspects of method acting is "sense memory," which involves using the actor's own experiences and emotions to recall the character's feelings and emotions. This allows the actor to bring a level of realism and truth to their performance, which can result in powerful and moving scenes.
Another important aspect of method acting is "emotional preparation," which involves exploring the character's backstory and motivations to understand their behavior and reactions. This allows the actor to get into the character's head and truly understand their motivations and feelings.
However, it's important to note that method acting can be intense and demanding, both mentally and emotionally. It requires the actor to be completely immersed in the character and their story, and to let go of their own ego and control. This can be challenging, but the end result can be a truly transformative and powerful performance.
In conclusion, method acting is a highly effective technique that has been used by many successful actors and actresses over the years. It requires dedication, hard work, and a willingness to push oneself outside of one's comfort zone, but the end result can be a truly memorable and impactful performance. Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned actor, incorporating the principles of method acting into your craft can greatly enhance your skills and help you bring depth and truth to your performances.
The recent double-shooting on the set of Rust, resulting in the unfortunate death of one of the crew, has made headlines globally. We've been approached by many sources for comment and although this is a subject you could write many books on, we asked our own Weapons Guy, Gavin Martin, to say a few words about Firearms Protocols in productions and why they're so vital. Here's what he had to say...
Firearms play a leading role in so many movies and TV shows, adding action, drama, and suspense to the story. It's so common that audiences don't really give it a second thought. However, handling firearms anywhere, let alone on a film set, can be incredibly dangerous unless proper safety protocols are followed. As a kid I worked in a shooting range and saw how even experienced shooters can easily make an error, especially after a particularly good shot, a long shoot or if suddenly distracted by something happening around them.
When we then consider that often, when a gun is pointed, its pointed at the camera, towards the crew, it really brings home just how important it is to take every single precaution to ensure absolute safety. Which is why the Alec Baldwin incident on Rust has been such a shock. So much had to go wrong before this could even be able to happen!
This article barely scratches the surface but should provide a basic intro to some of the firearms safety protocols that should always be followed in any production environment, to ensure everyone's safety.
Use of Prop Guns:
Prop guns, also known as dummy firearms, should be used whenever possible. Prop guns are designed to look like real firearms but do not have the capability of firing live rounds. This eliminates the risk of accidental discharge on set.
Use of Live Firearms:
Live rounds don't belong on sets. There's not really any need. If live firearms are used on a film set, only trained professionals should handle them. This includes actors and stunt performers who have been trained in firearms safety, as well as certified armorers who are responsible for loading and unloading the firearms.
Secure Storage of Firearms:
When not in use, firearms should be stored in a secure location, such as a locked armory or safe. This helps to prevent unauthorised access and reduces the risk of accidental discharge.
Safety on Set:
On set, firearms should always be treated as if they are loaded, even if they have been unloaded by the armorer. The muzzle should be pointed in a safe direction, away from cast, crew, and bystanders. Additionally, the trigger should not be touched unless the scene requires it. Our rule is simple and we even apply it to props as we think its good for people to learn the right behaviours from day 1 "You only ever point a gun at someone if you intend to shoot them". We do also advise our students that they shouldn't ever receive a weapon if they don't know how to check it themselves. Accidents shouldn't happen, but if they do its the actor / performer who will have to live with the consequences for life...
Before filming begins, a safety briefing should be held with all cast and crew to review the firearms safety protocols. This briefing should cover the proper handling of firearms, the safe storage of firearms, and what to do in case of an emergency.
Film Industry Guidelines:
The film industry has established guidelines for firearms safety on set, such as the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) guidelines, which provide detailed instructions on the use of firearms on set. Producers and directors should familiarize themselves with these guidelines and ensure they are being followed.
To wrap up, firearms are a common prop in film productions, but we can never forget they can be deadly if not handled properly. By following firearms safety protocols on a film set, such as using prop guns whenever possible, using only trained professionals to handle firearms, and providing a safety briefing to all cast and crew, the risk of accidents can be greatly reduced or even completely eliminated.
This is why the film industry has established guidelines to help ensure firearms safety on set, and it is the responsibility of producers and directors to follow these guidelines and always take the advice given to them by the experts they hire, to ensure the safety of everyone involved in the production.
Fight choreography is an important aspect of stunt performance, as it helps bring the scene to life and keeps the audience engaged. Here are five tips to help stunt performers enhance their fight choreography:
'Action Actors' are a unique breed within the world of acting. This doesn't mean they are any better or any worse than other types of actors, but it is a specialism ... lets explore why that is?
Action Acting is a specific type of performance that requires a unique set of skills and abilities. Unlike traditional acting, which may focus on emotional expression and dialogue, action acting involves performing physically demanding scenes that often require the actor to perform complex and potentially dangerous physical sequences. This type of acting is often seen in action-packed films and television shows, such as action movies, superhero movies, and adventure series.
To be a successful action actor, one must possess a combination of physical and mental prowess. Physical fitness is key, as action actors are often required to perform physically demanding stunts and fight scenes. Training in stunt work and martial arts is also important, as it helps actors develop the skills needed to perform high-speed chases and fight scenes with precision and safety.
In addition to physical skills, action actors must also have strong acting abilities. They must be able to convey emotions and create compelling characters, even in the midst of intense and physically demanding scenes. They must also be able to work well in a team, as action scenes often involve multiple actors and stunt performers.
Overall, action acting is a challenging and rewarding field that requires a unique combination of physical and acting skills. Whether you are a fan of action-packed movies and TV shows or are interested in pursuing a career in the entertainment industry, action acting is a type of performance that is definitely worth exploring.
One of the first lessons we teach in our Diploma course is also one of the most important. As we tell all our students "We are not in the Danger Business, we are in the Safety Business.
Stunt performing is, by nature, a high risk profession (when compared to most people's jobs), and despite the very best safety measures, accidents can and do happen on film and television sets. Sadly, still too often.
Unfortunately, some of these accidents have resulted in fatalities, and we teach that whenever an accident happens, even if it is a small one that only results in a very minor injury, there is always something we can learn about this and how we could prevent a repeat. It is ALWAYS important to examine what went wrong, how and why, and in each case to come out with plans or new measures that can prevent similar incidents from happening in the future.
Below are a few of the more high profile examples of stunt performers who were killed on sets and what went wrong in each instance.
Vic Morrow - Twilight Zone: The Movie (1983)
Vic Morrow was a veteran stunt coordinator and performer who had worked on numerous high-profile films. On the set of Twilight Zone: The Movie, he was performing a stunt involving a helicopter when the aircraft crashed, killing him and two other people. An investigation revealed that the helicopter was not properly maintained, and that the pilot was not adequately trained to handle the stunt.
Joi Harris - Deadpool 2 (2018)
Joi Harris was a professional road racer who was hired to perform a motorcycle stunt for the film Deadpool 2. During a practice run, she lost control of her motorcycle and crashed into a plate-glass window, killing her instantly. It was later determined that Harris was not wearing the proper safety gear and that the stunt was not adequately planned or rehearsed.
John Bernecker - The Walking Dead (2017)
John Bernecker was a highly experienced stunt performer who had worked on numerous films and television shows. On the set of The Walking Dead, he was performing a fall stunt when he missed his safety cushion and hit the concrete floor instead. Bernecker suffered severe head injuries and died from his injuries a few days later. An investigation revealed that the stunt was not properly planned and that the safety measures were not adequate.
Each of these examples serve as a reminder of the potential risks associated with stunt performing and the importance of proper planning, training, and safety measures. In each case there was more than could and should have been done to prevent the incident, and in each example a well trained professional was lost from our world.
While accidents can never be completely prevented, it is essential to ensure that all possible precautions are taken in order to reduce the risk of injury or death. By learning from these tragedies, we can work to make the film and television industry safer for stunt performers and everyone else involved.