Hulk Scene Details

Friday, October 4 2002

The following was sent in to us by 'Chubbs':My name is Billy Ray, and I just received a link from a friend to an archive about the scene in the Hulk movie where I had to drive a fire truck on Treasure Island. This was pretty awesome to see on the internet knowing that a lot of people are visiting your cool site. Thank you for the notoriety.

As far as the scene was concerned, it was all a matter of being in the right place at the right time.
I had been shooting with the crew for about 3 weeks as a Navy Seal. We were doing all kinds of stuff like running around, and jumping onto rooftops, and stuff like that, but nothing really major. Just being there for me was a thrill. Of course my ultimate goal is to become a big name, but I didn't expect to get a big break at this movie, as they had hundreds of extras including myself. So one day I just happen to be sitting around in the extra's holding area (you do a whole lot of this on a movie set) dressed in my full battle fatigues, and taking care of my M-4 with grenade launcher attachment. (when they assign you a weapon in the beginning of the day, you have to take it with you everywhere you go, and if you lose, or break it, you are kicked off the set, and you don't get paid)

So, anyway, I am just fooling around, when the guy in charge of wardrobe (Joe, I think it was) asks me if I would do him the honor of wearing a fireman's outfit for a scene. I was a little disappointed because one of the jokes among the extras was that if they took you out of your original costume, it meant you were definatly not going to be seen too much, unless it was your back, or your shadow passing by, and usually after you changed costumes, and shot your scene, they wrapped you, (meaning you were done for the day) So I wasn't thrilled about changing from a Navy Seal to a Firefighter. I did it anyway, and I went outside to the set. There was to be a scene with the Mayor Willie Brown leaving a building in a hurry, along with a whole convoy of emergency vehicles. Off in the back there was my fire engine sitting quiet. I was "In the shot", a term extras use excitedly when we are anywhere near the camera, only I had my back to the camera. The Assistant Director had me placing hose into the side of the truck, and she told me to beware of getting hit by all the vehicles that would soon be whizzing past me. Then Ang Lee was looking over the shot, and he announced that the fire engine need to be moving along with the rest of the pack, and he asked if I could drive the truck. An earlier conversation with one of the crew people had me talking about my going to school for Fire Science so she jumps in and says, "Yes, he is training to be a Fire fighter, so he knows how to drive that thing". I just kept my mouth shut and got in. Honestly, all I knew about a fire engine was how many different kinds there were, and how many gallons of water come out of the hoses per minute. But I wasn't going to open my big mouth and ruin this moment.

So I am in the truck, and I started it, and I slowly parallel parked myself into the correct spot in the convoy. They had a few practice runs, and I had a tech in the back of the engine with a walkie talkie, so we could hear them saying that the fire engine was going too slow. I needed to be basically tailgating all of the speeding cars. Now, we had to drive in a complete circle for the scene, but the camera will only show the vehicles speeding by. I had to perform a super tight turn with a full sized fire engine going at top speed. I asked the tech what would happen if I flipped the engine, and he said, "They want you to go fast, so do what you have to do".

I drove that engine like I was playing a video game. From what I heard, there was hose flying out of the side of the engine, the two side wheels were up off the ground as I turned , and I had black tire tracks burned into the pavement. I wasn't really paying attention, but I swear I saw the crew including Ang Lee, cheering as I jammed past them.

When they finally got all they needed, we all stepped out of our vehicles, and I got a big round of applause. Then Sonny Tipton, the stunt coordinator, comes up to me and tells me I just got myself a stunt contract for the driving job I had just done, and my pay jumped from $50.00 for a day to $650.00.

Needless to say that I am now inspired to continue with this wise career move, and pursue Hollywood as far as I can........

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