Christopher Nolan, as in his previous movies, pushed his film crew to develop and perform the best stunts possible in order to avoid having to resort to CGI effects. One of the greatest stunts of these in The Dark Knight was a scene involving a moving eighteen-wheeler truck being completely flipped upside down. Initially, the special effects supervisor of the film, Chris Corbould, attempted to convince Nolan to use a smaller vehicle for the stunt, as this would make the attempt much easier. Nevertheless, Nolan insisted on using a full size eighteen-wheeler.
The unforgettable semi-truck flip in the Dark Knight was completely real, driver (Jim Wilky) and all. A driver-operated canon-like contraption on the trailer blasted a two-ton steel battering ram against the pavement to flip the truck, resulting in an awe-inspiring cacophony of crushed steel and twisted metal. The stunt was actually practiced on an airstrip to ensure that the truck flipped straight, lest the buildings on either side be decimated with an off center crash.
Because of the gravity of this scene, Christopher Nolan used several cameras to capture the stunt. He noted on the Blu-Ray commentary, “We covered it from I think seven different angles—4 IMAX cameras, 2 Vista Vision ones, a 35…I actually don’t like to use a lot of multi-cam setups, but doing a stunt that is not repeatable like this, you really have to cover yourself and make sure you’ve got it from all angles.”
In the final cut of the film, Nolan used two angles of the truck: a camera positioned on a separate vehicle moving along with the eighteen wheeler, and a camera located inside a cop car that was moving directly toward the truck. Nolan stated, “Much to our surprise we found this to be one of the most effective angles.”
The Dark Knight was directed by Christopher Nolan for Warner Bros.
Things to look up (go to IMDB page ):
- Christopher Nolan
- Christian Bale
- Chris Corbould
- Jim Wilky