Divergent Book and Movie Fansite
This post is about the unsung heroes of the movie sets; those that sacrifice it all to make an actor look good. No, we are not talking about the Dauntless soldiers in the background, we're talking about the Divergent stunt people that make movie stars into action stars.
Divergent's Shailene Woodley has been on record saying that she would like to do her own stunts, which is fine if you are not in the middle of filming the first movie in an action trilogy. We give thanks for the very brave and capable Alicia Vela-Bailey, who is Shailene's stunt double. We here at DivergentFans.com have discussed the many intense stunts that make up the storyline of Divergent. We wanted to talk to Alicia and find out what drives the unsung stars of the movie.
We first learned that Alicia Vela-Bailey was part of Divergent from her tweets about long days on the set. Alicia would often tweet about needing a soak in a tub or a glass of wine after a grueling day on set. So we decided to learn more. After looking into Alicia's past work, we were incredibly impressed by the list of actresses and movies that Alicia had doubled.
At the age of 21, Alicia was called in to audition to stunt double for Milla Jovovich in the film Ultraviolet. After booking the job, Alicia spent six months in Asia. She spent four months in Hong Kong and two months in Shanghai, China. It was her very first movie experience, her first time being a stunt double, and with martial arts no less. Her performance earned her two nominations for a Taurus World Stunt Award in 2007 (a stunt person's Oscar).
After the film was completed, Alicia returned to Hawaii to continue dancing and teaching dance. After the passing of her father, Alicia decided to make the move to Los Angeles to pursue her dance and modeling career.
She landed her first dance related audition and became a member of the Pussycat Dolls. This required another move and another leap of faith that landed her in Las Vegas, Nevada. With the move to Las Vegas complete Alicia would spend 8 months at Caesar's Palace (the casino, not the real Palace) before getting her next blockbuster opportunity. Titanic's producer James Cameron was starting his next big project called Avatar. This was the impressive start to a long and illustrious career as a stunt double.
Here is Alicia's performance in Ultraviolet as Violet's double that garnered her acclaim:
DivergentFans.com: How did Divergent action compare to stunts you have done on Underworld or Ultraviolet?
AVB: Divergent had a very wide range of stunts to be done: falling down/getting beat up, fighting, high falls, wire work, under water work, little fire burn, zip lining, train jumping and working with an animal(dog). As for Underworld it was just mostly fighting, falling/getting beat up, underwater stuff, and a little bit of fire.
DivergentFans.com: Is this your first time jumping trains?
(Alicia with Tracy Spiridakos on the set of Revolution)
DivergentFans.com: What was your most challenging day on the Divergent set? Did you get any injuries?
DivergentFans.com: What scene are you most excited to see on the movie screen?
AVB: Neil and the cast was so much fun to work with! Everyone was super cool and had no egos or anything. Very down to earth, such a pleasurable working environment! :). I also really enjoyed working with Theo James again.
I found what Alicia said about certain scenes exciting! Sounds like a real dog was used for Beatrice's aptitude test instead of a CGI dog. Thank goodness cause they always look a little odd. The under water work with weeds sounds like Tris' fear landscape where she is in the middle of the ocean and almost drowns. This gets me even more excited to see how in-depth they go into the simulations.