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Umbrella Academy Stunt Coordinator Reveals His Favorite Season 2 Stunts - Exclusive

Season 2 of The Umbrella Academy has arrived on Netflix, and fans who've watched its ten episodes have witnessed the ways in which the show leveled up in its second go-'round. The time-hopping shenanigans, intra-familial antics, and problematic super-powers are all bigger and better this time around — and that expansion of scope extends to the show's action. The season kicks off with the biggest super-powered battle we've seen from The Umbrella Academy so far, with the Hargreeves siblings taking on an invading Soviet army, and it only gets more bonkers from there.

The man responsible for making all of this happen is Rick Forsayeth. A stunt coordinator with a long Hollywood resume that includes the 2015 Heroes miniseries, the RoboCop reboot, and Alien vs. Predator, among many others, Forsayeth works with The Umbrella Academy showrunner Steve Blackman to create and execute the stylish action set pieces that punctuate the series' drama.

With the season having hit the streamer on July 31 and audiences greedily plowing through the Hargreeves' Dallas adventures, Forsayeth took the time to chat with Looper about his favorite stunt-focused moments, and how VFX and stunt work come together to create TV magic.

The Umbrella Academy season 2 ups the action ante

According to Forsayeth, the bigger, better action of the show's second season was part of an effort to up the stakes not only for spectacle's sake but also because it made sense given the characters' personal journeys. 

"The ante was raised just because they were all growing into their newfound powers," he recalls. "Well, not newfound. They were sort of on the learning curve, and then we just had to adapt those powers into the characters as they went. When did Luther become bulletproof, and when did Diego learn to bend things the way he did in the opening scene? It was challenging, but it was fun to get into it and actually prove it out."

Season 2 features several slam-bang fight scenes, and for Forsayeth, a big part of bringing them to life was combining traditional choreography with the super-powers brought to bear by the Hargreeves and others. 

"It's harder," he admits. "But in the same sense, it can make it easier, because you can use it to get out of a jam. What is Five going to do now? He could blink out and go behind this giant guy, and use the blinking powers to our advantage. He is a 58-year-old assassin. He has the skillset. It's a matter of putting them to use in the new body he's got."

Rick Forsayeth's favorite stunt moments on The Umbrella Academy season 2

Over ten episodes of The Umbrella Academy season 2, there are a bunch of action beats for which Forsayeth was responsible. Which ones jump out as his favorites? The first is the aforementioned battle between the titular academy and an invading Soviet army. 

"The opening sequence was good," he says. "It was a lot of physicality on my players just running around and getting shot, but I believe Sylvain White directed that — and with the help of Everett Burrell our VFX producer, who is amazing. He put it together really well."

His peak moment, however, was more intimate, and was apparently the realization of a long-held ambition for the show: a one-shot fight sequence. 

"There was another sequence with Diego," says Forsayeth. "It's a long hallway fight between Diego and one of the Swedes. It's something that Steve had always wanted to do. We talked about doing it in season 1, but couldn't find a place for it, but season 2, we found a place for it, and it was pretty much a oner dollying on the outside of a hallway, and the fight just continues in one shot from one end to the other."

It's the kind of cinematic action sequence we're more used to seeing in films than on TV, and it's just one more element that makes The Umbrella Academy worth checking out. If you want to witness Rick Forsayeth's handiwork for yourself, season 2 of the show is streaming now on Netflix.