Stunt coordinator and former stuntman Rick LeFevour has a resume that speaks for itself. This is the man who drove the Ferrari in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, who stood in for Tom Cruise in Risky Business and Bill Murray in Groundhog Day. LeFevour worked his way up from rodeo cowboy to low-end stuntman to one of the preeminent stunt coordinators in the biz. And in addition to working on TV series such as Shameless and Sirens, LeFevour also is responsible for awe-inspiring stunts in blockbusters like The Dark Knight and Man of Steel.
The stakes in LeFevour’s current gig on NBC’s Chicago Fire are very real. “There’s no such thing as ‘movie fire,’ ” he says. An added challenge is the time limitation of TV. “On a film I might have a whole month to prep a stunt that we have to do here in eight days. In TV, you really have to be on your game and nail it. Sometimes you only get one chance.”
Working on a set like Chicago Fire requires teaching the actors “how to respect fire,” LeFevour says, “because it is dangerous. We try to plug our actors in where they feel comfortable and where we feel it’s safe for them to be in that close proximity.” He is full of praise for the Chicago Fire cast. “They are almost like real firemen, to a point,” he says. “They know how to react to a fire, how to act in that environment and how to perform.” LeFevour also praises John Milinac and his special effects department for helping find that “middle ground where (stunts) look exciting but no one gets hurt.”
Although he’s about to wrap production for the season, LeFevour isn’t taking a break. He’s in talks on a Spike Lee movie and to be lead driver on a project involving a car chase in Miami. Just another day at the office.
To see footage of a stunt from a recent episode of Chicago Fire click play below:
To see a highlight of the episode in which the above stunt aired, please click play below: