Colorado is the home of the ROCKY MOUNTAIN STUNTS TEAM and we are looking for Men and Women interested in pursuing a career in the action film industry. Our performers train in weekly classes under the guidance of working professionals who understand the industry and what you need to know to be marketable as an action performer.
For further information, take a look at our FAQ.
ROCKY MOUNTAIN STUNTS is not a revolving door training school where you attend a single “seminar” or “workshop” with the hope of entering the stunt business with limited training and knowledge. Although short term workshops can be fun and informative, it is almost impossible to obtain refined muscle memory without prolonged repetition of technique. Our goal is to maintain a unified troupe of performers who are in sync with one another on the highest level. This requires a great deal of training, trust, and experience working side by side with one another. We accomplish this with a combined martial arts & stunts training regimen.
Our WEEKLY STUNT CLASSES are held Saturday nights 7:00pm to 8:30pm and are focused on armed and unarmed fight choreography along with acrobatics, falls, and simple wire assisted stunts used to increase the intensity of fight based action.
9499-B Washington St.
Thornton, Colorado 80229
Our WEEKLY MARTIAL ARTS classes are held on Sunday mornings 11:00am to 1:00pm where we focus on swordsmanship and Wednesday nights 7:00pm to 9:00pm where we focus on unarmed combat, acrobatics, and weaponry skills.
8031 Wadsworth Blvd A-4
Arvada, Colorado 80003
We do not offer a stunt-only program. Although this may seem like a slight to an aspiring stunt performer, it is the exact opposite. In order to create a believable fight, a pretty important ingredient is understanding fighting technique. This is why it is imperative to train the performer to hone their falling, striking, grappling, throwing, weaponry, and other related skills. This is important because when we get into a choreography session, we don't have to waste time teaching a performer how to throw a punch or kick and can get right into designing the action.
We recommend a 3 day a week training regimen. This includes two martial arts days and one stunt day that gives the performer 5.5 hours of training each week (approx. 24 hours a month).
MONTHLY TUITION - $200.00 per month
We do offer a 2 day a week training option that includes one martial arts day and one stunt day that gives the performer 3.5 hours of training each week (approx. 14 hours a month).
MONTHLY TUITION - $175.00 per month
Each program will have required uniform and equipment needs.
Black training uniform, sash, leg ties, synthetic sword, plastic scabbard, rattan short staff, training knife, practice chain, synthetic throwing blades. Other gear as needed.
(Inquire for costs)
Black sweat pants, official RMStunts t-shirt, black athletic shoes (no logos), hard and soft knee and elbow pads, spine protector, soft leather gloves. Other safety gear as needed.
(Inquire for costs)
We teach intensive workshops that cover a variety of action related subjects. Workshops are loosely scheduled and will be announced four to eight weeks out. Stunt Workshops are by invitation only, most often limited to current team members. Practical FX Workshops are open to the public and to team members. Training and equipment costs vary from workshop to workshop.
Falling and basic acrobatics are important because a stunt performer hits the ground... a lot. We will teach you a variety of breakfalls, recovery rolls, leaps, and spatial awareness.
You are a character from the Old West. You will fight with rugged conviction in a no nonsense fashion, throwing haymakers that deliver jaw-breaking power in the name of frontier justice.
You are a character from the mean streets. You mix hybrid martial arts with a bit of dirty fighting in a no rules mentality where quick thinking is the only way to survive in a city plagued with violence.
You are a character from the Far East.
You will fight with technical precision, delivering offensive and defensive maneuvers with stylized movements that reflect both grace and focused energy.
You are a character from a fantasy world. You wield swords, staves, daggers, and a variety of other exotic weapons on your quest to vanquish evil creatures and defend the realm.
Being able to simulate aggressive action with an opponent seems simple, but the dynamics involved are extremely intricate. This workshop will cover all the fundamental elements of film fighting.
You are a modern action hero character who is armed and dangerous. You will fire, reload, move, and disarm opponents with a flair reminiscent of one who serves on her Majesty's secret service.
Learning to take a bullet, a hurled dagger, or a flying arrow is an art form. Whether its via camera trick, a wire guided projectile, or a pneumatic effect, the performer must learn to sell the hit.
Complex falls traversing stairs, tumbling over objects, crashing through furniture, or busting through windows and doors requires a great deal of spatial awareness and skill.
Wire stunts are often used to create powerful action. We teach our performers how to use rigging and harnesses to levitate, execute assisted jumps, fly, and receive powerful pulls.
When falling from heights higher than 20' we use specialized techniques. performers are taught the proper way to construct and fall into box rigs and various methods of falling into airbags.
Working with fire and pyrotechnics requires strict set of rules and our stunt performers are taught the proper etiquette, safety, setup, and use of chemicals and fire gear.
Learning to create, rig, or provide safety services for breakaway fx is a valuable skill. Bottles, weapons, furniture, windows, and even façade arms and legs are often used in action sequences.
Blood appears to be an easy concept, but one must know how to deliver pneumatic bullet hits, sprays, splatters, and subtle drips using the correct blood mixture to create the perfect dramatic effect.
Sculpting, molding, casting, and painting prosthetic appliances is a fantastic skill. From simple wounds to complex creatures, the art of creation is a powerful and lucrative skill.
WHAT IS A STUNT PERFORMER?
Stunt Performers are individuals who put themselves in while performing stunts or doubling actors on film & television productions. Imagine fighting off zombies in a post-apocalyptic future, falling from a stagecoach in the old west, flying through the air on wires like a superhero, clashing steel with knights on a medieval battlefield, or having a laser battle against alien creatures on an abandoned space station... These are the things that happen in the exciting life of a professional stunt performer!
WHAT TYPE OF PERSON MAKES A GOOD STUNT PERFORMER?
Active people with strong body awareness make the best stunt performers. These people come from physical lifestyles that involve things like gymnastics, martial arts, extreme sports, and even dancing because these skills have a fluid dynamic that translates very well to film.
WHAT TYPE OF PERSON DOESN'T MAKE A GOOD STUNT PERFORMER?
Thrill-seekers and daredevils with no regard for their own safety. Stunt performers need to be focused and disciplined with the knowledge that they are expected to approach an action sequence in a safe and professional manner rather than an arrogant attitude more interested in the adrenaline rush than the project.
CAN STUNT PERFORMERS ALSO BE ACTORS?
Stunt performers are actors. They mostly deliver physical dialogue rather than words. Most the time stunt performers are cast as street thugs, police officers, military personnel, or an average person walking on the street who has to jump out of the way of a speeding car. That said, stunt performers who are also trained as actors are more prepared to play characters that have more than one or two lines. At the end of the day acting is another valuable tool in the overall arsenal.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A STUNT PERFORMER AND A STUNT DOUBLE?
A stunt performer is a general term for someone who executes a difficult action that involves a dangerous element. A stunt double takes the place of an actor in a scene requiring action by dressing in duplicate clothing and performing the dangerous part of the scene. The actor is brought back in when the stunt is complete. If a stunt person is lucky, they will find a high profile actor who they work with all the time.
IS IT EASY TO BECOME A FULL TIME STUNT PERFORMER?
Of course not, if it were easy everyone would do it. However, if you have the drive and tenacity to train hard, do the work, get the gear, and build your promotional materials, you have a much better chance to succeed. The concept of FULL TIME work is not something that really applies to the film industry. You will likely have gaps in work based on the time of year, what productions are starting up, how connected you are, and if you have the right look and skills needed for a show. The life of an artist!
WHAT GEAR DO I NEED?
Well, stunt performers usually have a "stunt bag" with all the basic safety gear they may need on set. These include hard and soft knee and elbow pads, shin and forearm protection, tailbone pad, rib protector, back pad, mouth guard, black non-descript shoes, thin leather gloves, and other items like these that are valuable in many situations. Beyond that, there are a variety of specialized items that can be added. Flame retardant clothing, custom wire harnesses, rappelling gear, or any other items that go along with your personal repertoire of skills.
ARE STUNT PERFORMERS PART OF THE SCREEN ACTORS GUILD?
Yes. Any on-screen performer is part of SAG-AFTRA, the Screen Actors Guild and American Federation of Television and Radio Artists. However, when you start out you will be non-union and your goal is to get into the union in order to have guaranteed industry standard pay rates for your work. Until then you will negotiate your rate on non-union shows that will range from free work for experience to whatever you can convince them you are worth.
HOW DO I GET IN THE UNION?
The best way into the Union is to get what is called a Taft-Hartley contract. This is when a Casting Director or Stunt Coordinator chooses to hire you, a non-union performer, to play a principle role or perform dangerous stunts. They must file a form explaining to the union why they chose to hire you instead of one of the 120,000+ members who are already part of the union. The best way to do this is to be an exceptional actor or a highly skilled action performer with special talent or ability.
WHAT IS A TYPICAL RATE FOR A STUNT PERFORMER?
The current union scale day-rate is $906.00. However, there are a variety of low budget and ultra-low budget contracts that SAG-AFTRA offers producers to make professional performers available to smaller productions. So, depending on the type of contract, that rate can fluctuate.
WHAT IS A STUNT ADJUSTMENT?
The terms "stunt adjustment" refers to an extra amount of money given to a stunt performer doing more difficult stunts. Full body burns, high falls, car rolls, or other such gags typically get higher bumps in pay. Sometimes the budget allows for small adjustments for simpler stunts as well, all depends on the size of the show.
DO STUNT PERFORMERS GET RESIDUALS?
Yes, every time a show airs on television, cable, a premium channel, VOD, etc, the performer can earn a small percentage that is gathered by the union and paid via check or direct deposit various times throughout the year. The more successful the show, the higher the residuals.
DO I NEED A HEADSHOT AND/OR DEMO REEL?
Yes, but unlike the recent past where you had to mail these items to a production office, they are more often delivered digitally online. A good headshot, a resume detailing your personal attributes, credits, special skills, and training, and a well edited reel showing brief clips showing your physical abilities are a huge key to your success. That said, showing the same type of skill over and over in different settings is not variety, make sure you show a diverse range of abilities.
WHAT IF I DON'T LIVE NEAR A PRODUCTION HUB LIKE LA OR NEW YORK?
There are places around the country that have larger film communities for sure, but filmmakers are everywhere. Creativity is not isolated to a location. Starting out in a smaller market to gain a bit of experience can be beneficial before trying to move to one of these locations. Or if you are happy where you are, just thrive in your local film community.
SHOULD I WORK ON LOW/NO BUDGET FILMS TO GET FOOTAGE FOR MY REEL?
The general answer is yes, but make sure you don't advocate unsafe practices by doing stunts you are not trained to do. Make sure there is insurance that covers the stunts and a qualified stunt coordinator on board to ensure your safety and protection. To be clear, by qualified, I mean a person who has extensive credits on real productions doing stunts, not a parkour instructor, a martial arts black belt, or someone who has served in the military or law enforcement. All these are respected professions, but they do not qualify someone to be a stunt coordinator. Lastly, never ever offer to BE the stunt coordinator if there isn't one on the show. Don't let ego guide you down this rabbit hole of liability and danger. No show is worth risking anyone's safety and if the production can't "afford" to do it correctly, they should not be making an action picture. Stay safe, stay working.