Staging a fight on screen requires a tricky of combination of elements - you have all of the regular technical elements required in telling your story as well as the challenges of coordinating the stunts to pull off a convincing (and safe) fight. Luckily for us, we had a secret weapon when staging a boxing competition for this episode of Arctic Air - actor Alex Paunovic.
Alex Paunovic who plays Jim McAllister on Arctic Air is also a former Canadian amateur boxing heavyweight champion which made him the perfect candidate to bring the tough guy competition to screen. "I grew up in a boxers family" revealed Paunovic "My dad, my grandfather, my uncle were all boxers in the old yugoslavia."
Paunivoc combined his boxing background along with his acting experience to help blend the two together seamlessly. "We were going through the steps we needed not only to be safe with doing these punches but also make it look like we're not safe." He explained. "These punches for us, we know that they have to land, but they're not going to land at the full capacity. The best thing about it is that we're turning our bodies, we're making sure the cameras are in the right space but we are actually hitting each other."
Alex Paunovic wasn't the only boxer on set. "Big Andre" who stands at an intimidating 6'9 and Mike Dobud who plays "Kimbo" are also both serious athletes. All together, the stunt coordinator, the actors and the fighters would all come together for fight rehearsals to work together to bring the choreography together. Everyone came together and brought elements that were their own to the fight sequences that helped give all of the fights an exciting and authentic feel to them.
Stay tuned each week for a new doc on each episode of Arctic Air detailing how we create certain elements and moments for the show.