About The Production
The world's top martial arts choreographers, action specialists and
trainers came together on DAREDEVIL to devise and execute some of the most
impressive action set pieces ever put on celluloid.
Three months prior to filming, Ben Affleck began a regimen of fight and
fitness training to prepare for the role of Daredevil. Working under stunt
coordinator Jeff Imada and veteran British fight trainer Dave Lea, Affleck
trained in a variety of fighting styles, every day before and during production.
"It was a new training regimen for Ben," Lea says. "I started
with stretching and then hand-drills, stick-drills and kicking. Then we devised
a combination of street fighting, jailhouse rock, hand fighting, various Kung Fu
styles, and boxing styles. For Daredevil, every fight is different. He uses what
he needs to use at the time, and he takes a hit as often as he gives one.
Daredevil can be fluid and graceful, or just plain down and dirty."
Blind actor and personality Tom Sullivan, whose inspirational life story
provided the basis for the television movie "If You Could See What I
Hear," served as a sight consultant to both Ben Affleck and Scott Terra
(who plays the young Matt Murdock.) "My job was to teach Ben to be the best
blind person on Earth," Sullivan says. Sullivan worked closely with Affleck
and director Mark Steven Johnson to carefully find a balance between Matt
Murdock as a lawyer and Matt as Daredevil. "We tried to set up a situation
where Matt always has the capacity to be Daredevil, only he has to hide that
from the world at large. As Matt, he has to remember to be â€˜more blind' than
he is." Sullivan, a lifelong athlete who won the U.S. Nationals as a
wrestler, also worked closely with Affleck and his trainer in the techniques of
close quarter combat.
Renowned martial arts specialist Cheung Yan Yuen choreographed several of
the film's major action set pieces. A film legend in his native Hong Kong best
known for his work on the feature film "Charlie's Angels," Yuen
hails from a dynasty of martial arts experts. His brother, Wo-Ping Yuen, was the
action choreographer for "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" and
Yuen admits he initially had reservations about Affleck, Garner, and Farrell's
ability to perform the complex martial arts scenes he was creating. "I was
pleasantly surprised and pleased with their skill," he says. Affleck,
Garner and Farrell performed the majority of their own stunts in the film.
The film's car and motorcycle chases and shootouts fell under the purview
of stunt coordinator Jeff Imada, a veteran stuntman and stunt coordinator who
has lent his talents to nearly 100 films, including "Blade,"
"Fight Club" and "Blade Runner."
With all this elaborate martial arts choreography and acrobatics, the
filmmakers were determined to keep all the action grounded in reality. Matt and
Elektra are human beings, not superheroes, and their athletic skills had to be
believable. "We tried to make sure that gravity applies to all of our
characters," says Gary Foster. "Daredevil has a more brutal, physical
style than some of his comic book counterparts. Daredevil is a guy that if he
were to jump off a building, he'd hit three fire escapes to slow himself
Before cameras could capture the action, production designer Barry Chusid and
his team of set designers, concept illustrators, set decorators and storyboard
artists had to create Daredevil's physical world. In designing the sets,
Chusid had to consider the character's blindness, the vibrant colors of the
Hell's Kitchen, the Westside area in mid-town Manhattan situated between 34th
and 59th Streets, from 8th Avenue to the Hudson River, is Matt Murdock's home
and place of employment. Though the Hel
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