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How Hollywood Makes Gunfights Look Realistic | Movies Insider

The British Action Academy runs several courses in high-octane stunt work. ‘Gun Rush’ is a popular course aimed at rising stunt performers who want to learn how to safely handle firearms for use in action sequences. We took the full-day course outside of Woking, west of London, to find out how firearms stunts are co-ordinated. 

Founder Andreas Petrides has been working in the industry for over 28 years. He has worked on “Gladiator”, four “James Bond” movies, “Band of Brothers” and “Star Wars” to name a few. As part of the course, Andreas runs through safety drills and shares his industry experience. Training is done with rifle, 8mm hand gun, Uzi and M4.

Movies use a range of weapons during filming. ‘Blanks’ are working weapons loaded with blank cartridges. These produce a big muzzle flash or a loud ‘bang.’ There are replica guns, or for less detailed dummy guns — ones made of rubber. Actors need to know how to adopt a convincing gun stance. Two of these examples are a Boxer stance and a Weaver stance. 

The prop guns themselves go hand in hand with sound design. When a gun fires, you’re hearing three acoustic elements. The muzzle blast sound, the impact point, and the ‘crack’ sound of the bullet traveling through the air.  Without this layering, a movie just doesn’t seem as realistic. 

Find all the British Action Academy courses here:

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How Hollywood Makes Gunfights Look Realistic | Movies Insider

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22 comments

  1. Avatar

    This is BS… we all know John Wick use real guns and bullets!

  2. Avatar

    Well bullet on 90 degrees on matrix, 45 degrees on firing…. anything make sense on the movie…
    Why? It’s the matrix bra they fire and flip guns so fast, they even used their tiniest fingers to fire two 9mm rounds…
    It’s a pleaser for the crowd

  3. Avatar

    He’s not firearms instructor if he hold the gun like that. Weaver stance is outdated. And teacupping the gun is incorrect.

  4. Avatar

    A lot of gun fights in films look fake

  5. Avatar

    For being "professionals" it doesn't seem like they really know what they're doing. Their stances, grip, and general gun handling are mediocre at best. No wonder people in TV shows and Movies look like they don't know what they're doing. The people training them don't know either. Not to mention people who actually get shot fatally drop like a sack of potatoes. You only fall back like that if you are shot non-fatally and are put into shock by the shot immediately.

  6. Avatar

    Did these people also train Dylan oBrien for American assassin?

  7. Avatar

    yet they never got distant gunshot sound right

  8. Avatar

    Somebody needs to teach this guy how to actually hold a firearm…..

  9. Avatar

    "In the old days, of course, people used to actually get shot."

    This is just stated so matter of factly… Because of course, everyone knows that this is just what happened back then. You wanna make a movie? Someone's gotta die

  10. Avatar

    not realistic that is not how people fall when shot in the head

  11. Avatar

    Oh my dear sweet Lord, there are so many inaccuracies in what he was saying! There's no "punch" sensation when being shot, bodies literally just slump. And if you aren't a licensed firearm instructor, it's best to just stick to stunts because in the real world NO ONE engages enemy combatants by rolling around and improper weapon handling mechanics…. But it seems like they're all justcstunt people and Hollywood is fake so, there's that.

  12. Avatar

    God this guy trying to teach people to hold and use guns is disgusting 🤮

  13. Avatar

    “How Hollywood makes gunfights look realistic”
    You mean garbage und completely stupid?

  14. Avatar

    Dodgy old school shooting and stances, watch a magpul dvd it’s more upto date

  15. Avatar

    Isnt it odd how murica has to send its actors to uk for action training when uk has some hella restrictive gun laws

  16. Avatar

    All these "students" should ask for their money back.

  17. Avatar

    All of you are not gun elitists and this is Hollywood we’re talking about.
    Would you watch a realistic but boring movie? No, they add emphasis or over the top reactions because of eye candy.
    People want to see over the top while looking real content. If someone in a movie gets shot and just flops like a ragdoll, that shit is boring.
    The thing that sells the impact and action of the movie is the action of the actors, doesn’t matter if it looks realistic or not. People love over the top content.

  18. Avatar

    Nobody ever knows how to die. These directors need to go peep some live leak

  19. Avatar

    First of all, Keanu Reeves was actually trained by Tauren tactical and learned how to use a real gun for the John wick movies. So don’t just throw that around like everything was fake.

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