Jon Patrick of The Selvedge Yard (fascinating blog btw) posted an article from The Muscle Car Review (March 1987) that was titled ‘The Greatest Chase of All’ and that was fully dedicated to a behind the scenes look of how they filmed Bullitt, the grandaddy of car pursuit movies. Required reading for all of us.
We set out to learn what the recipe is for such a successful chase sequence. What we found out was that there is none; it was pretty much a hit and miss thing and, as Ron Riner put it, “other people have tried to put the same combination together to get the same results and haven’t really done it. Before we’d shoot a scene, everyone, the location people, the police department, the stuntmen, the director and Steve, would get into discussions. We realized we didn’t know what to do because no one had ever done this before.” What hadn’t been done before was a chase scene, done “at speed”(up to 110 miles per hour) through the city streets and not on a movie studio back lot. Bud Elkins said, “I think it was the first time they did a complete car chase at normal camera speed. What you saw is what really happened. It was real!”
Don’t wait any longer, head over to The Selvedge Yard to read the whole piece.
Little delay in postings on the Bullitt Special but we’re still on. This time with maybe one of the most awesome elements I found related to the movie’s famous car chase: the original script/screenplay. Having a great idea is one thing, producing it is another. It is the crew’s commitment to reality that made these 7 pieces of paper into what is now most arguably the most famous car chase in movie history. How can you not enjoy this? ;)
Saying it again. Awesome!