There is always something quite fascinating about watching chase sequences . . . specifically car chases sequences..! NOTHING drives the adrenaline like seeing a breathtaking car chase sequence in a movie. Face it .. we all love it… Watching a BMW chase down Porsche… or…maybe to step things up a little.. lets picture… a Scarlet Red Ferrari chasing down on a Pearl Yellow Lamborghini. Twisting and turning around long and winding roads ( I love that Beatles Track). Accelerating…Breaking…Screeching…Revving… Laying Down Some Rubber… The Sickening yet sweet smell of rubber burning into the tarmac…hmmm…. i think thats pushing it! Maybe I’m imagining a Formula One race…!
Eitherway…you get the picture! Somehow, there is this excitement in seeing a beautiful exotic car being tested to its limits… pushing it far beyond its boundaries and that priceless feeling of you ‘dream car’ overshooting a turn and sliding and running away and launching itself straight off a CLIFF!!! Crashing & Burning!! And in our mind, we think…. “Wow.. What a waste..! I wish they gave me that car instead of wrecking it..! and yet we get some strange pleasure in seeing these cars burn down and to talk in the racing sense… “Get Totalled”
The irony of all this is that .. It is Cinema! Entertainment..! Thats what it is… Truth is.. in 9 out of 10 cases if there is a car crash, the car will never blow up the way they show it in the movies… It’s exciting though how they tend to show a wrecked car and the driver gaining consciousness while he suffers a concussion and starts to realise and comes to terms with what is going on. Just then you will see a focal shift showing fuel leaking out of the car onto the road and somehow there is always a spark that ignites a flame and BAMM!! The Car Explodes ..! Flying MILESSSSS…. up into the air. Its cliched… done several times… most of the times we anticipate and know what is about to happen but that still is not a good enough reason to take our eyes off this Fantasically and classically executed sequence.
Having these ideas in mind… I had worked on an Animatic on a Car Chase back in school. it was a skill testing assignment no doubt, but having researched and watched A HUGE number of chase videos, I planned my own short sequence.
I felt an environment setting in a rocky canyon would be exhillarating. The wide roads… the dusty environment… turning into blinding and ever narrowing fatal curves and twists with the risk of running off into the face of death would make for a good environment for a chase scene. Although my final Animatic is MUCH simpler than the way i have described or imagined in this post..I am still pretty happy with the result on my first attempt.
I did realise a few things though… Firstly i realised shooting and planning real live action sequences, be it cars or hands-on combat are FAR more tougher to execute than they seem… No matter how skilled the director is or how massive the infrastructure of the production is…. To have that level of thrill and excitement going for a viewer is a tall ask..!!!! …and what makes it more even more challenging is the thought that “how can i make this sequence spectacular…! How can i make it one of a kind…! and THAT.. I believe is the challenge of it.
So the next time you see an amazing action sequence, think about the planning and time and effort required for its creation…and appreciate the skill and creativity that goes into making it.
For now… Here’s my small little animatic. Enjoy!