Look out Gary, there's trouble on the way. Coronation Street is set to air what looks to be the world's firsts stunt to be filmed since the entertainment industry ground to a halt earlier this year - and it looks set to be one that resident murderer, Gary Windass (Mikey North) will not be forgetting any time soon.
One of the first things that Mikey had to do when he returned to work following lockdown was to be hit by a car in dramatic scenes due to air next week. Viewers will know that the net has been closing in on Gary with many people growing closer to learning that he murdered Rick Neelan.
Upcoming scenes will show Sarah learn what he has done and dramatically storm off to call the police. Gary follows in hot pursuit and Sarah ends up in the path of an oncoming car - leaving Gary to push her to safety and take the hit himself.
“These were the very first three episodes that I filmed after lockdown. We have had to alter and change things but I don’t think it has lost any of its intentions and, hopefully, it will be just as good as it would have been on location. I got to ride on the bonnet of the car and I was quite pleased to have the opportunity to do the stunt myself because I enjoy that part of the job but I have never done a car stunt like this before. I loved it.”
As for Tina O'Brien who plays Sarah, the stunt was a little less action-packed for her as social distancing led to a mannequin having to be used at the pivotal moment where Gary pushes her clear of the vehicle.
"We had such a good time filming these scenes and I have really enjoyed being part of something so different, " said O'Brien of the action-packed moment. "The mannequin is from the Underworld set but when I stood next to it, it was towering over me! We had to saw the bottom of the legs off to make it more realistic and more my height but we have a very talented director and post-production team so no one will notice when it’s in the show. I am really looking forward to seeing how it looks on screen."
Director David Kester said: “Because of social distancing, Mikey cannot touch Tina or push her away and that is integral to the stunt because his character has got to look heroic and that he has saved her. We are cheating it by using a mannequin from Underworld and if we shoot it in the right way, making it a tight shot and we do it very quickly, it will work and will still sell the idea that he has pushed her.”