Being A Stuntman
Being A Stuntman
Trevor Baylis (Inventor) gives expert video advice on: As a stuntman, did you put yourself in danger?; Can you explain how your underwater stunt with the Berlin State Circus worked?; Why did you put yourself in so much danger? and more...
As a stuntman, did you put yourself in danger?
Worst time I ever had, I guess, was the first time in Berlin where they dropped a sarcophagus, would you believe? Now the act, basically was this: they use to rope me up and blindfold me, put me in a sarcophagus – large, box, coffin – nailed the lid on, and then dropped me into fourteen foot of water, you see. Anyway, I was all prepared for it, you see, and the rope snaps and it went in head first, and I was under there thinking, “Oh my god,” you know. Now fortunately there was enough air in there for me to survive, but I had to get out within four minutes because I was restricted. But I had a yak-yak (that's an underwater sound system) to somebody saying, you know, “Drev drev,” you know, counting down as it were. Had to been a may day. They would've fished me out some hour, I guess. But anyway I did that the first time and it came unstuck, but I survives all right, and then the rest of the show was fine.
Can you explain how your underwater stunt with the Berlin State Circus worked?
I can't explain the stunt with the Berlin State Circus because one is technically not allowed to explain how the stunt is done. This is one of those equity agreements. You know. How do conjurers work? Well we don't get to give that away.
Why did you put yourself in so much danger?
Because it gave me a buzz I suppose, showing off. It's what makes people do skateboarding, roller boarding. Why do you do anything?
What was your favourite stunt to perform?
I guess it was that underwater escape act. That was the one that really did give me a buzz. But then I used to do a lot of fire dives. I did actually come unstuck once. I used to light up. In fact they did a "This is Your Life" on me. In that they mentioned this fire dive where they set fire to me, and they put too much petrol on me, on my dress. I went in there and I did burn myself slightly, but that was generally a real screamer as it were. It went down extremely well. It's weird, you know, when I think of the things I used to do then like swimming in the Serpentine on Christmas Day. Now what would make a person do that and yet I did. It's crazy isn't it? Freezing cold, you know the thought of it. Sitting here cold, but the thought of me plunging into the Serpentine Christmas Day is illogical, to say the least. Crazy the things you do.