By far, the riskiest film we pulled off!
Our client who owned the Krishnapatnam Port had a simple idea – demonstrate how high the Port’s cranes were by challenging a daredevil to take a dive off them. Sounded simple enough.
When we set out to do this, our first casting idea was a Redbull sponsored Czech-based stunt diver. But when he heard how tall the cranes were – the safety requirements he proposed just didn’t add up to the film’s raw vision.
That’s also when we realized how dangerous this could be. That’s when the alarm bells went off.
We weren’t sure if this was workable anymore.
You see, hitting hitting the water surface badly – from THAT height – was as bad as hitting the ground. And the result should be broken bones and torn skin.
But then, it was Bollywood to the rescue!
A respected stuntman – Usman Khan was introduced to us by a producer-friend.
We did the initial Reece, going up the cranes and over all the possible safety measures and precautions. All through, Mr. Khan was all too calm about the jump.
But we weren’t.
He had done scores of stunts over his 30 year career – but this was our first!
On the day of the shoot, we had 6 cameras trained on him, and 5 of his crew members on close watch. This was pre-drone days so we used a massive crane just to follow his journey up and give us that one glimpse of his over the shoulder view.
Completely fearless, Usmaan took his place on top of the container. And up he went.
Initially, he just walked along the length of the container. And so the Director brought the container back down to insist that he stay put in the center, as heavy winds blew and made the empty container unstable.
Usmaan Bhai agreed.
And the die was cast.
Thankfully, we all lived to celebrate.
The spirit of an extraordinary man. And his journey to an extraordinary port.
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