The movie stuntman has directed bone-crunching thriller Extraction and says that CGI will never replace the thrill of seeing a real person risking life and limb on screen
The stunt performers who have made it as directors can be counted on the broken fingers of one bandaged hand. In the 70s and 80s there was Hal Needham (director of Smokey and the Bandit and reportedly the inspiration for Brad Pitts character in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood) and Buddy Van Horn (Any Which Way You Can). But the past decade has brought a clutch of new examples: Chad Stahelski (the John Wick trilogy), David Leitch (Atomic Blonde, Deadpool 2) and now Sam Hargrave, the prodigiously bearded, 37-year-old stunt coordinator who doubled regularly for Chris Evans as Captain America.
Hargrave has made his directing debut with another Avenger, Chris Hemsworth, in the Netflix thriller Extraction. Hemsworth plays the mercenary Tyler Rake, dispatched to Dhaka to rescue a crime kingpins kidnapped son. Though, as the boy points out, he doesnt look like a Tyler. He seems more like a Brad.
Is that a Pitt joke? It kind of is, admits Hargrave with a giggle down the line from his home in Malibu. No matter how much dirt or blood you put on Chris Hemsworth, theres no getting around it: he is devilishly handsome.