"Filmmakers Prepare Groundwork For
Car Launch off Foresthill Bridge"


by Gus Thomson, Auburn Journal, November 2001

With hiking and biking trails closed below Foresthill bridge, a Los Angeles film crew prepared Wednesday to launch a late-model Corvette off the edge of the span and into the American River canyon.

And while a crowd had already gathered far below in a parking area at the American River confluence and plenty of preparatory activity was taking place, including a test launch without the cameras, the actual filming of the stunt to be seen in the movie "XXX" is scheduled for Friday.

In one of the most spectacular stunts to be attempted off the 29-year-old span, a red 1998 Corvette will be seen racing along the bridge before shooting off the edge. The driver will be seen parachuting from the car as it hurtles to the canyon floor some 730 feet below.

But all will not be as it is seen. The Corvette that goes over the edge will be a stripped, fiberglass shell with all headlamps, tail lamps, lights, glass and ornamentation removed.

Security personnel hired by Revolution Productions of Los Angeles were posted at trailheads Wednesday on both banks of the north fork, effectively cutting off public access to the area under the bridge that the second-unit crew of "XXX" will use for filming.

Security officer M.A. Khan of Sacramento's Comprehensive Security Services said other guards were placed at the Lake Clementine entrance to the trail to prevent anyone from entering the danger area.

A permit with the state Department of Parks states [that the] remains of the car will be recovered by helicopter as soon as possible. All other debris from filming is also to be removed. A second helicopter will be utilized Friday for filming.

A swift water rescue team has also been contracted for the shoot. The crew will be waiting in kayaks on the north fork while the stunt takes place. Ambulance and emergency medical people will also be standing by.

Intermittent traffic control will continue today and Friday. Fifteen-minute waits can be expected from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Foresthill Road between Lincoln Way and Old Foresthill Road.

There will also be a lane closure on Old Foresthill Road at the confluence between Highway 49 to the bridge over the north fork from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. The closure is to provide adequate space for parking on the road shoulder for film employees.

Seventy-five people are working on the film as members of the second-unit crew.

Because the film involves stunt work and no acting, "XXX" star Vin Diesel will not be part of the shoot.

On Friday, two 45-minute closures are planned with detours along Old Foresthill Road and Highway 49. There will also be intermittent 15-minute closures during filming on Old Foresthill Road to Highway 49 for driving shots.

©2001 Auburn Journal



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