Our standard for what makes a movie stunt impressive is pretty high these days. But there’s another major factor that makes it hard to have crazy car action in today’s movies–the inherent idiosyncrasies of modern cars themselves. Los Angeles’ Petersen Museum opened its incredible movie car exhibit, Hollywood Dream Machines, on Saturday with a party and a panel of people who had worked to coordinate and design cars in some of the best-known movies and TV shows from the last few decades. Among them was Dennis McCarthy, a Motion Picture Car Coordinator for Black Panther, Captain Marvel, and a whole bunch of the Fast & Furious films. McCarthy brought up Black Panther because the Lexus 500 F Sport that the company paid a lot of money to be in the movie was a huge pain to do big, beautiful Hollywood powerslides in. “These cars are made to do everything that’s not a car stunt,” McCarthy said. He explained that he’s been dealing with cars on camera long enough to know that, now, it’s important to ask the people providing a modern car for movie stardom, or in this case product placement, to send it with a computer programmer to deal with its litany of safety systems. “With modern cars, you pull a headlight bulb out, the car won’t run,” McCarthy joked, but his point was corroborated by Josh Hancock, who’s also in the movie car business. Hancock added that the production of Baby Driver had to fly a technician in… [Read full story]
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