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The Most Dangerous Stunt In The Rogue Warfare Series - Exclusive

The September 25 arrival of Rogue Warfare: Death of a Nation marks the conclusion of an action movie trilogy that took the industry by surprise. 

Despite its low budget and lack of A-list stars, the Rogue Warfare sequel Rogue Warfare: The Hunt skyrocketed into the Top 10 on Netflix in August 2020, as audiences reveled in the escapism provided by the film series' gritty military skirmishes and hand-to-hand combat. An ensemble cast that includes Will Yun Lee, Jermaine Love, Rory Markham, Bertrand-Xavier, and Stephen Lang star in the franchise, about an elite group of soldiers racing against the clock to stop terror plots. 

All three entries were shot back-to-back in California, on budget of next to nothing (by Hollywood standards), by director Mike Gunther and his partners at 5150 Action Productions. Gunther is a veteran stunt performer with a résumé that boasts chapters in the Fast and Furious, Bad Boys, and Transformers franchises, so he and his stuntmen-turned-producer partners knew how to craft big action set pieces — including the one that turned out to be the most dangerous in all of the Rogue Warfare movies. 

Working to avoid a 700-foot mountainside drop

Rogue Warfare: The Hunt, the second entry in the trilogy, begins with members of the team traveling by motorbike and dune buggy down a narrow mountain road, en route to rescue one of their own from a terrorist encampment. There's gunfire, heavy gear, the hot desert sun, and a variety of actors scrambling to and fro during the action-heavy scene.

In an exclusive interview with Looper, Gunther revealed that sequence to be the most complex and dangerous to capture in any of the three Rogue Warfare movies. 

"The opening of Rogue Warfare 2 [was] the most difficult, because there are a lot of moving parts," he explained. "You're dealing with vehicles, and we're on a fire road. The challenges of just getting that [right], with no one driving off the side of a mountain and dropping down 700 feet, [were immense]. You've got a small window of light that you're trying to get in the morning — and then you have to hit ten to 12 pages a day to even make your day. Otherwise, it's a domino effect, and everything starts collapsing.

Continued Gunther, "The number of people that we were constantly having to redress and move to this place, to be able to repurpose them doing stunts, and then adding the vehicles with the camera car and all that for the day, you just have a lot of people. You don't necessarily have [the most experienced stunt performers] because you don't have money, so you're using the hungry guy that wants to be there. [It's] a trial by fire a little bit. But everyone rose to the occasion. I think it made us all better. That's what was at stake every day, but that's what was so difficult and dangerous at the same time." 

Rogue Warfare and Rogue Warfare: The Hunt are both available on Netflix. The third installment in the trilogy, Rogue Warfare: Death of a Nation, arrives in select theaters and on video-on-demand platforms on September 25, 2020.