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Hollywood director Scott Waugh on Need for Speed
IF you’re movie is going to be a tire-screeching, metal-crunching action fest then you’re going to want a director who knows their way around the stunts.
So it is no surprise that the studio sought out Scott Waugh to direct Need for Speed, the flick based on the high-octane, visually bombastic series of street racing video games.
Scott retired as a stunt man a decade ago after 25 years of risking his life on film sets.
Since turning his back on performing, he has built a reputation behind the camera with a solid foundation for realistic action and shunning CGI effects.
Each of the stars of Need for Speed – including Breaking Bad’s Aaron Paul and Kidbrooke’s Dominic Cooper – had driver training while a team of some of the world’s best drivers was also on hand.
Scott said: “When I grew up, with my father, they didn’t have that luxury of doing it the easy way.
“My dad was the original Spiderman. He had to really climb the buildings.”
He added: “I get the thrill of trying to figure out how to catch it all in one take.”
On top of the huge stunts, Scott also took a risk with casting, avoiding going down the standard action-movie route.
He said: “When I was first looking at the Tobey Marshall (lead) character, I wanted someone with a Steve McQueen vibe.
“I grew up around Steve and knew him personally. I think Bullitt is still one of the greatest car movies of all time.
“I didn’t want someone that looked like Steve, but someone that had that essence, edge, charisma.
“When I saw Aaron, casting put him up in front of me for the bad guy.”
Seemingly in the minority, Scott hadn’t seen Aaron as Jesse in Breaking Bad, but he was impressed once he’d seen him in action.
He said: “I thought this kid’s amazing. Why are we considering him for the bad guy? That’s the obvious choice, why not the lead?”
A relative rookie in directing terms, Scott had trouble persuading the powers that be. But he got the backing of DreamWorks studio’s principal partner, Steven Spielberg.
For the bad guy, Scott wasn’t even sure if Kidbrooke actor Dominic Cooper would want to be involved.
He said: “I told him the kind of movie I wanted to make. I wanted to make a throwback to the ‘60s and ‘70s car movies that I think were awesome and real. There was no CGI. He really resonated towards that.”
Need for Speed is in cinemas on Wednesday, March 12.
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