Movie producers go to great lengths to create fantasy world's that leave use awe-struck. Some do this by CGI. Some do this by strong storylines. But others prefer to use more conventional means. Hey, if you've got a spare couple of million and a decent stunt driver, why not write off an absurd amount of cars... For real!
Cars really do get a tough time in Hollywood, as these films below show. These are some of the most engine exploding, tyre bursting movies ever made. Next time you sit down to watch an action film, take a minute to pay your respects to all the cars harmed during filming. Poor them.
1. Spectre (2015)
A Bond movie just wouldn't be the same without some of the most spectacular cars on the planet, and Spectre is no different. However, unlike reality, where anyone privileged enough to own an Aston Martin would guard it with their life, the stunt coordinators took a more careless approach and, well, smashed loads of them to pieces.
The grand total of DB10's obliterated came to an eye watering $37m. One scene in particular, a breath taking car chase through the Vatican, cost millions alone. For a couple of minutes of footage... Stunt drivers drove cars up to 110mph around Vatican City, so it's no surprise so many got damaged. You can see some behind the scenes footage below.
To put this in perspective - Spectre is the most expensive Bond movie, and also one of the most expensive films ever made. And, despite this, the cost of blowing DB10's alone accounted for more than 10% of the budget. Money well spent though, right?
Cars destroyed: 7 Aston Martin DB10's alone
2. Gone in 60 Seconds (1974)
Some 26 years before Nicholas Cage graced our screens in the remake, Hollywood was busy flipping cars for fun in the original Gone in 60 Seconds.
The original lengthy car scene almost wrecked 100 cars, and there were numerous accidents during filming.
Writer, director and producer, Henry Halicki, was even involved in a real accident when shooting the scene. He hit a light pole at 100mph, and had to be taken to hospital. Ouch.
Cars destroyed: 93
3. Fast & Furious 7 (2015)
Perhaps unsurprisingly, each of the movies in the Furious franchise have sent many cars to the scrap heap. However, the most recent installment, Fast & Furious 7, has topped the lot.
In fact, so many cars were ruined, around 20 or 30 had to be taken directly from the set to be crushed. This was to avoid any of them ending up on the black market.
Owner of Bonnie's Car Crushers (the local scrap heap of choice) Richard Jenson said:
“It was kind of unusual, to see some relatively late-model Mercedes-Benzes, all crunched up and good for nothing.”
I bet it was, Richard. But this is Hollywood after all.
Cars destroyed: 230
4. Blues Brothers (1980)
This 1980 classic features one of the most iconic car chases in cinema history, but not without sacrifices. Unfortunately, 60 police cars were harmed during the making of the scene. Rest in Police. Although, unlike Spectre, where a DB10 costs upwards of $100,000, each of the cars were bought for $400.
Crash. Bang. That's the sound of the police... car being smashed to pieces for our measly entertainment. Relive the scene below:
The movie actually broke the world record for most cars ruined in a movie, until 2 years later The Junkman surpassed it. Which isn't surprising, seeing as our friend Henry Halicki, who we met earlier, was directing it. That guy seems to make a living orchestrating car crashes for fun.
Cars destroyed: 103
5. Matrix Reloaded (2003)
Have you ever loaned something to a friend, and had that feeling you probably won't get the item back? Well, that feeling is nothing compared to General Motors. GM loaned the producers of Matrix Reloaded 300 cars. They wrecked all of them. Oops!
Now if I was General Motors, I'd want to know why so many were wrecked when producers spent $100 million on special effects. Couldn't they mock up some car destruction?
Not content with merely sabotage the loaned cars, they even built, from scratch, the 2km freeway just for the scene. It was destroyed not long after.
Cars destroyed: 300
6. Last, but certainly not least... Transformers: Dark of the Moon (2011)
If you had to try and guess, try and guess how many cars Michael Bay wrote off for this movie? And before you say something silly like 2,000 and ruin this pointless paragraph, I'll stop you. 532. Five-hundred-and-thirty-two. Cars. Gone. Kaput.
However, car lovers among you fear not. The cars used in the film were already heading for the scrap heap, so really, Bay was just doing them a favour. He said:
"These are cars that are flood damaged. Car companies give them to us because by law they have to be crushed, so I am the perfect guy to do that."
I can't really think of a better way for a car to go, and trust me, I've exhausted all possibilities...
There are many more films that wreck cars for fun, and these are only a small collection of some of my personal favourites. For example, in the making of Need for Speed, a McLaren P1 was totalled, at the cost of $1.3 million. All in a day's work.
However, even from these six films, the grand total of cars destroyed is 1,265. So I think it's fair to say, cars themselves are the unlucky victims of Hollywood's stuntmen. Our hearts go out to you.