Some say he vanquished the demonic hordes of the dread Dormammu, and has mastered the crimson bands of Cyttorak. Others say that the hoary hosts of Hoggoth wouldn’t pass him in a dark alley, and that he uses the Wand of Watoomb as a back-scratcher.
All we know is, he’s called The Stig – and as it turns out, Top Gear’s tame racing driver had a pretty crucial role in new Marvel superhero movie Doctor Strange. Mind = blown/opened to the possibilities of the multiverse.
Well, OK, it’s actually a little more complicated than that – it was actually a former version of The Stig involved in the movie, with Ben Collins (who played the second iteration of the white-suited racing driver in Top Gear from 2003 to 2010, until he was unmasked by newspapers) employed by the film as a stunt driver. The current Stig was presumably a bit busy filming with Matt LeBlanc and co.
Anyway, according to promotional materials for the film, Collins performed one of the crucial action scenes for the film where surgeon Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) crashes his Lambourghini while texting, permanently damaging his hands and eventually leading him to look for healing from sorcerer The Ancient One (Tilda Swinton).
For the scene eight different cars were used at locations in the UK and New York, including special effects and stunt versions, as well a separate Lambourghini front section that was submerged underwater with Benedict Cumberbatch.
“I was in a water tank at 4am, strapped into a Lambourghini, cut in half, being turned upside down, post the car crash, trapped inside the carcass of the car half-unconscious as the water was rising into it with a camera going underneath to capture me upside down,” Cumberbatch later recalled of the stunt. “It was so surreal.”
Still, with an old hand like Collins (above) as the car crash stunt driver (having previously worked on Spectre, The Dark Knight Rises, Kingsman: The Secret Service and Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation among other films), the scene all managed to come together.
And on that bombshell…well, let’s end the article.
Doctor Strange is in UK cinemas now