Hi, I'm Steve Truglia, Stunt Co-ordinator & Performer, Action Director & TV Presenter. Via this blog, I hope to share 'behind the scenes' stories from the Film & TV Stunts world and keep you up to date with my latest adventures.
More about Steve TV & Film Credits
This year's Spectacular Scene Of The Year was won by Hollyoaks for the Skydiving Scene in the Late Night Special.
Stunt Coordinating this scene was a real pleasure as we sent the girls off to learn to skydive. A combination of live skydives and stunts ensued as we worked out a way to make the final death scene as realistic as possible using the artist herself.
Having had two other nominations for Soap Awards for my stunt scenes, it has been great that we won this one; thanks to the great crew at Lime Pictures, the tremendous Director Sean Glynn and of course the girls themselves for giving 100% and doing most of their own stunts.
Red Bull have announced an attempt at the Space Jump with one of their 'athletes' at the end of 2010.
This is great news because my project can launch THIS SUMMER!!! beating them to it. Everything is firmly in place and ready to go. To make this happen we urgently need sponsorship to get the balloons built, test jump and launch this incredible adventure.
Five's motoring magazine show returns for an action-packed one-off special. Stuntman Steve Truglia prepares to perform a toy-car trick in a life-size vehicle fitted with Dunlop SP30's. He will attempt to defy gravity and neck-breaking G-forces to loop-the-loop. This stirring 'Fifth Gear' special follows Steve every step of the way to see how he prepares for this extraordinary stunt. He seeks advice from Finnish female stunt riders, a daredevil aerobatics pilot and a Cambridge University doctor of mechanical engineering, while training to withstand the incredible G-forces he will experience while driving in the loop. Steve needs to hit the launch ramp at the perfect speed. If he is too slow, he will drop out of the sky as soon as he is upside down. If he is too quick, he will experience enough G-force to make him blackout. Steve has never failed to complete a stunt yet - but will he succeed this time? Will his Dunlop SP30's keep him on the track, even when he's upside down?
There are some nice press articles too: Here from Sky News
Like most busy people, I find it hard to keep a regular physical training regime whilst working. As a busy Stunt Coordinator I often travel the country and work long days with very early starts. Non filming days are filled with reading scripts, budgeting stunt sequences, writing risk assessments, traveling to recces and production meetings.
Staying fit, strong and supple enough to perform stunts is critical to helping physical coordination and avoiding injury. Many stunt people find these fitness levels decrease as they get more regular work and become generally busier. Fortunately experience and having a strong sports background often makes up the shortfall but it's not the ideal solution.
I've met many people in other walks of life who face the same challenge. We'd all like to be as fit as our schooldays or teenage years, have boundless energy and a feeling of well being. Sadly it seems many kids today are not as fit or as health as kids were years ago. I got to wondering how their health will fare as they become busy adults.
6 months ago a friend and mentor Wag Bennett died, (see earlier post). It somehow motivated me to get in the best shape of my life. This meant setting aside the 'I don't have the time' excuses once and for all. I remembered the words of a great personal development trainer, he said, "for things to change, you have to change; for things to get better, you have to get better". So I decided to change my habits, in terms of training and diet.
I set about a regular routine of weight training which rekindled a long running theme of bodybuilding and strength training which started when I first visited Wag's Gym in London when I was 15 years old.
I have since decided to compete in a bodybuilding contest, (when I'm ready), and produce a fitness DVD, as a way of setting a clear target to keep me on track.
This post is, in part, a way of making the goal public, and hopefully it may motivate others to commit to becoming fitter, stronger and healthier. I should emphasise that I am personally, totally against performance enhancing, (or any other), drugs and am training entirely naturally. Interestingly I'm still building muscle and am in my 40's with good food, training and rest.
These pics are after 6 months or regular training and good diet. Bodyfat about 17%.
The Sunday Telegraph Newspaper asked me to do an article on what takes to be fit enough to do movie stunts. I spent the day with journalist Alex Benady, who was a great sport, he was fit, strong and determined. A true example of someone with a busy full on deskbound career staying in very good shape.
Last week was the first opportunity to fly my new Russian custom made spacesuit. It's the only one of it's kind in the World, having been put through it's paces at the American company which makes suits for NASA, (company and manufacturers names witheld until after the jump).
Photo courtesy of Aikix. Geeking in on my pic is Andy Godbold, sky god!
The next tests will include the life support system and parachute container. Further tests will include flying the drogue chute in the tunnel to test stability. Then it's on to the hypobaric and cold temperature tests.
NB: THIS PROJECT URGENTLY NEEDS SPONSORSHIP, please help us break this exciting record which has stood since 1960!
The sad news reached me of the passing away of one of my seminal influences and one of bodybuilding's true legends, Wag Bennett last week.
Wag ran a bodybuilding gym in East London for around 50 years. He won some early bodybuilding titles, became the first person in Britain to bench press 500 lbs, (when he only weighed 150 lbs!!), in 1951, and was the President of the English Federation of Bodybuilders.
Wag inspired many people with his willingness to share his vast knowledge and passion for bodybuilding and strength training. We would sit for ages after my workout talking. He'd share dozen of stories of the bodybuilding legends he knew and trained. He was a fountain of knowledge and shared it willingly.
One of those bodybuilders was Arnold Schwartzenegger. When 'Arnie' was 19, he came to London. He met up with Wag who soon spotted his huge potential. Wag (and his wife Dianne), took Arnold into their home and Wag set about training (and feeding and housing), the young Austrian. Wag taught Arnold to pose for competitions, and introduced the idea of posing to music, which they pioneered together. Wag is on the left here.
As a skinny (8 and a half stone), 15 year old, back in the late 70's, I tentatively, and nervously stuck my head around the door of Wag's gym, to be greeted with a warm welcoming smile from Wag, and his gym manager Nick (Jeremiah) Tyler. "So you want to build some muscles eh?, well you've come to the right place lad", was the response I got. Nick set about writing me a beginner's routine and Wag began teaching me the basics of good exercise form, nutrition, sleeping, and positive thinking....what a revelation to a young mind.
One day Wag announced that Arnold would give a seminar in the gym. We sat about the benches and on the floor agog, listening to the most positive thinking human being I'd ever met. I left that seminar believing that almost anything was possible to achieve. Clearly that drive remains with him to this day.
This influence got me to change my scrawny body into an 11 stone athletic, strong physique within a few months, gave me the confidence I lacked previously, and taught me about the power of positive thoughts. I developed an interest in other sports, like boxing, fencing, martial arts, canoeing, running and climbing. A new life opened up before me. Some years later I got very carried away and rose to 14 stone 10 lbs with 16 3/4 inch biceps, squatting over 400 lbs and benching over 350 lbs in training. This was bodybuilding the old fashioned way, 18 eggs a day washed down with 4 pints of milk. Protein drinks, chicken and enough vitamins to sink a boat. Training so hard you couldn't walk home in a straight line. Contributing to more ozone damage than a field full of cows!!!
Without Wag's seminal influence, kindness, training, positive attitude and that gym, I would never have joined UK Special Forces, never have had the life of adventurous sports which I've enjoyed, and would never have become a Stuntman and Stunt Coordinator.
I owe a great deal to the man who helped so many to live a stronger, healthier, fitter and more positive life. I'll miss popping into his old gym for the odd workout, and I'll miss sitting with him afterwards, telling him stories of my stunt exploits, which he always asked about.