One example from one of our more than 400 users is when a wolf was to be shot in a dramatic sequence for the 2015 thriller “The Dark Side of the Moon” (Die Dunkle Seite des Mondes). The production did not feel CGI-hits looked convincing enough, so after testing several ideas and keeping the safety of the animal in mind the wolf trainer used the air squib unit and a trained wolf. The visual effect worked out really well and the low sound generated by the unit did not frighten the animal. After training the wolf to fall down on command, the scene was ready to be filmed. The unit was strapped with a dog harness onto the wolf, hidden in the fur. Then stage blood was filled, and the nozzle was aimed outwards. When the wolf was perfectly positioned in the viewfinder, the trainer pushed the radio control transmitter to activate the squib effect. Simultaneously the wolf dropped as it had been trained to do. The hit was very convincing and only gave off a minimal sound making this an ideal problem solver in an otherwise rather tricky situation.
The absence of loud noise when rigging a safe bullet hit may be a great advantage in cases when animals are involved. In addition, it is a big plus during nighttime filming, when jittery or inexperienced actors are involved, when actors are close to each other, and even in cases where you do not want to pass out earplugs to the whole crew.
Kudos to Mr. Kihm for rigging this unusual effect and sharing the info with us!
If you have other unusual or regular news to share with the bullet hit community – let me know!