Posted on Friday, July 16th, 2021 by
Stuntman is a new documentary coming to Disney+ later this month. While you might expect it to be a new project looking at the life of a professional stunt performer working in Hollywood, this feature film is a little more complicated.
Eddie Braun has been a stuntman for over 30 years, but one stunt has always been at the forefront of his mind, a challenge that was never quite within his reach. Iconic stuntman Evel Knievel was his childhood idol, and there was one big stunt that the red, white, and blue clad daredevil couldn’t pull off: a manned rocket launch across the Snake River Canyon. With the glory days of his stuntman career running out and retirement looming around the, Eddie Braun set out to complete the rocket stunt himself, and the Stuntman trailer sets the stage for this daring feat.
Eddie Braun has done everything from stunt driving on The Dukes of Hazzard TV series to being the stunt coordinator on Rush Hour 3 and so much more. But in recent years, the hard-hitting career had been taking a toll on him, and Braun was looking to get out of the game. But before walking away with all his limbs intact, Braun felt compelled to take on this almost mythical stunt that nearly cost Evel Knievel his life when it went wrong.
The Original Stunt
During the original stunt back in 1974, the drogue parachute on the rocket deployed too soon, creating significant drag as the rocket blasted off. The vehicle and Evel Knievel made it all the way across the canyon, but winds caused it to drift back into the canyon as it came back to the ground. It landed a few feet from the water on the side of the canyon where the rocket launched, and if it had landed in the water, a harness malfunction would have left Knievel to drown in the rocket. In the end, he only sustained minor injuries, but the stunt remained incomplete.
In the years since the Snake River Canyon jump’s failure, several stuntmen had expressed interest in trying to complete it. But Eddie Braun is the only one who made an active attempt. Since his efforts unfolded in 2016, you can easily find out how it turned out, but if you don’t know the outcome, just go along for the ride with this exciting and inspiring documentary.
Stuntman is directed by Kurt Mattila, who also produced with Steven Golebiowski and Eddie Braun through Driven Pictures. Dwayne Johnson, Dany Garcia, Hiram Garcia and Brian Gewirtz executive produced through their Seven Bucks Productions, and Evel Knievel’s son Kelly Knievel also executive produces. Here’s the official synopsis for the documentary:
The documentary film Stuntman follows legendary stuntman Eddie Braun as he attempts one of the most dangerous stunts in history. Contemplating retirement and having survived over three decades of hellacious car crashes, explosions, high falls and death-defying leaps, Eddie decides to complete what his childhood hero never finished – the infamous Snake River Canyon rocket jump – an audacious televised event that almost killed famed daredevil, Evel Knievel.
Stuntman arrives on Disney+ on July 23, 2021.
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