STUNT PERFORMERS stand in for actors when dangerous activities and action sequences are needed. They try to perform stunts with the greatest visual impact and the least safety risk. Stunt performers usually arrange their own stunts and work out every detail to minimize risk of injury. They may fall from runaway horses, jump out of moving cars, jump off cliffs, enter buildings that are on fire, and perform many other dangerous feats. Stunt performers also participate in fight, battle, and other action scenes. Although the work sounds very glamorous and exciting, it can be extremely dangerous. A great deal of athletic ability and skill is required to perform stunts.
Salary, Size & Growth
- $50,000 average per year ($24.00 per hour)
- A medium occupation (54,700 workers in 2010)
- Expected to grow moderately (1.3% per year)
STUNT PERFORMERS need to master a variety of physical and other skills in order to become proficient in this area of the entertainment industry. This may include driving cars, motorcycles, and boats, horse riding, flying planes, gymnastics, rock climbing, martial arts and boxing, swimming or scuba diving, trampolining, and skiing. An excellent grasp of mathematics and engineering are essential. A working knowledge of cinematography and film theory is also an asset. The Screen Actor's Guild recommends a possible apprenticeship by working initially as an actor or screen extra. No special licensing or certification is required for stunt performers.