One of the significant debates in the world of movies is whether to use stunt doubles or actors who do their own stunts. There are advantages and disadvantages to both ways of doing things that help make a significant difference. The critical thing that almost everyone agrees on is that this is not a decision that should be made without careful consideration.
Pros and Cons of Stunt Doubles
One of the advantages of stunt doubles is that they have a lesser chance of injuring themselves because of their training, compared to conventional actors. Even though extreme caution is still necessary, they are capable of doing stunts considered more dangerous. Stunt doubles don't have to practice motorcycle safety to the same extent that regular actors would have to. One example would be traveling down a busy freeway without a helmet, a scene familiar in action movies. A disadvantage involving stunt doubles is a possible difficulty finding a double who resembles the actor they are standing in for. When there is not enough of a resemblance, the difference might be visible to viewers and decrease their enjoyment. One way that producers and directors try to minimize this problem is by avoiding close-ups when the double is on-camera or using technology to depict the actor performing a task that would otherwise be too dangerous.
Pros and Cons of Actors Who Do Their Own Stunts
An advantage for actors who do stunts is a greater chance of recognition at the Oscars and other awards events. An actor doing their own stunts helps add to already exceptional performances. Some actors who have done stunts have seen career boosts as well because of their dedication. However, sometimes a regular actor might not be allowed to do stunts that are considered too dangerous, especially from an insurance perspective. Actors also receive training for their stunts for a matter of weeks or months, rather than years. Stunt performers keep training for years to stay at the top of their game.
Who Should You Hire?
The answer to this question depends on the circumstances. Much of the decision will depend on the risks of the stunts performed, any restrictions that actors might have on performing individual acts, and the budget. Stunt doubles are considered the safer choice. They are less likely to end up injuring themselves because of their high training level. The stunts they are allowed to do are often considered too dangerous. However, allowing an actor to do their own stunts helps them get a career boost. In these cases, actors might consider the risks to be worth the possible reward. The decision is one that must be made with the circumstances involving every film kept in mind.
With the varying opinions about whether stunt doubles or actors are better to hire to do on-screen stunts for a film, this is a decision that producers will continue to have to make depending on each individual film. However, both options offer great possibilities regardless of the chosen path.
Here’s another article you might find helpful: How Traditional Hiring Practices Can Help You Hire the Best Actors