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The Real Reason Michael Bay Has A Problem With A Record-Setting James Bond Stunt

While most critics and moviegoers would stop well short of calling Michael Bay an "auteur," there's no denying that the "Bad Boys," "Armageddon," and "Transformers" franchise director has an aesthetic, ambiance, and artistic approach all his own. That said approach could best be described, literally, as "explosive," which hardly takes away from the unbridled confidence with which the director owns his specific style or the enthusiasm with which fans pour into the theaters each summer to see his films. On the contrary, such a description only adds fuel to his fan base's less literal fire. It's no surprise, then, that the man behind both 1996's "The Rock" and (lest we forget) Meat Loaf's most beloved music videos has a thing or two to say about blowing things up.

In fact, if one were a betting individual, and one happened to be asked to guess which title holds the record for largest film stunt explosion ever, one might be inclined to put their money on any number of Michael Bay projects. One might, for example, assume that such a record belongs to the gargantuan explosion in 2001's "Pearl Harbor." And one, at least according to Bay himself, would be correct. Unfortunately, Guinness World Records disagrees.

According to the nearly 70-year-old source of oddball achievements and awesome feats, that record is held by Sam Mendes' 2015 "James Bond" film, "Spectre." Unsurprisingly, Bay has some thoughts about the ruling.

Michael Bay says Bond can't beat Pearl Harbor's attack scene

In a recent interview with Empire, Michael Bay revealed his "recipe" for the perfect explosion, saying, "You're mixing different things and different types of explosions to make it look more realistic. It's like making a Caesar salad." The director's uniquely terrifying understanding of salad construction notwithstanding, his approach pays off in a particularly impressive explosion in his 2001 WWII epic, "Pearl Harbor."

Bay explained the excruciating logistics behind the succession of fireballs and bomb blasts. "No-one [sic] knows how hard that is," he said. "We had so much big stuff out there. Real boats, 20 real planes. We had 350 events going off. Three months of rigging on seven boats, stopping a freeway that's three miles away." Whether you're a fan of the film or not, the result of all those simultaneous "events" is certainly something to behold. "James Bond tried to take the 'largest explosion in the world,'" Bay quipped, adding a conclusive "bulls***. Ours is."

Technically, the award went to special effects and miniature effects supervisor Chris Corbould for his design of the film's Erfoud, Morocco-shot explosion. The (supposed) record-setting blast lasted 7.5 seconds, required nearly 70 tons of TNT equivalent, and as Guinness reports, "was the result of detonating 8,418 litres of kerosene with 33 kg of powder explosives." Bay stopped short of providing the detailed math behind the blast he insists holds the record, but if you're looking to judge for yourself, you can see it on YouTube.