Crashing the Box-Office: Study Reveals Most Dangerous On-Screen Drivers
Vin Diesel claims the scrap-car crown as the most dangerous on-screen driver
Hollywood action old-timers Bruce Willis and Arnold Schwarzenegger take next top spots
Diesel’s character ‘Dominic Toretto’ wrote off 30 cars in just one scene, during Fast Five’s (2011) vault heist car chase
The most reckless on-screen drivers have been revealed following new research by Scrap Car Comparison that tallied up the number of times 25 top action stars actors have written off cars across their entire filmographies.
Whilst the movies that kill the most cars has been revealed (as Transformers 3 and Matrix Reloaded), the person behind the wheel who wrecks the most cars was, until now, unidentified. Researchers at Scrap Car Comparison settled in over the lockdown weeks, with plenty of popcorn, to record which action stars were responsible for putting the most vehicles on the scrap heap whilst on-screen. After hours and hours of watching cars, motorbikes, helicopters, boats and snowmobiles explode, shatter and burn, it can now be officially revealed that the actor who is the most dangerous to vehicles on-screen is Vin Diesel.
Best known for his appearances as Dominic Toretto in the long-running Fast and the Furious franchise, Vin Diesel takes the crown of being the actor you would most want to avoid when out on the road. Totalling more cars than film’s he’s starred in, the 53-year-old actor has wrecked a total of 61 cars during his films, with almost half written off in 2011’s Fast Five, where he took out 30 cars as Toretto, whilst dragging a heavy safe from his Dodge Charger before writing that off too.
Actors that have Wrecked the Most Cars On-Screen: Top 10
|Ranking||Actor||Number of Cars Wrecked|
|10||Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson||18|
Just one crashed car behind Diesel was Hollywood legend Bruce Willis, who has wrecked some 60 cars during a career that started back in 1980. Willis’ dangerous driving as reckless detective John McClane has seen him famously trample over a Lamborghini in a Moscow MRAP chase, and even implausibly launch a car into a hovering helicopter.
The podium is completed by none other than Arnold Schwarzenegger, an actor synonymous with the term ‘action hero’, who has wrecked cars as The Terminator, all the way to freezing the bat-mobile as Mr. Freeze in 1997’s Batman & Robin. The top 10 also features Tom Hardy, a relative newcomer to crashing cars on-screen against seasoned stars such as Arnie, Willis and Tom Cruise, who ranked in ninth having trashed a total of 19 cars, mainly during his roles as Mission Impossible’s Ethan Hunt.
Over 30 of the cars in forth-place’s Matt Damon’s total car wreck count of 35, were made in his role as Jason Bourne. Perhaps the most memorable car wreck is the one from the 2004 Bourne Supremacy, where Jason is pursued in a hijacked yellow taxi cab in Moscow. The chase results in a few car-wrecks, but the lack of big Hollywood explosions definitely makes Bourne’s final collision into the tunnel barrier feel much more brutal – a definite wince moment when you see the damage done to the taxi.
At number five, writing-off 30 cars in six movies, is Keanu Reeves. He’s one of Hollywood’s most dangerous drivers thanks to his role as John Wick. Reeves destroys 17 vehicles whilst playing retired hitman Wick, including five motorbikes. His biggest car kill count however is in the film The Watcher (2000), which includes a scene where he blows up a gas station, destroying the police patrol cars chasing his character.
In the sixth spot is Tom Hardy. A cross five of his films, Hardy ruins 29 cars, starting with the 2008 Guy Ritchie thriller RocknRolla and ending with Venom (2018). In Venom, Hardy destroys at least 13 cars, over double the number he writes off in scrap car favourite Mad Max Fury Road (2015). Despite spending the entire film behind the driving wheel in Steven Knight’s tense drama Locke (2013), Hardy actually doesn’t crash his vehicle during the film.
Daniel Craig is in seventh place. In his role as James Bond, Craig is seen destroying 24 cars across four movies: Casino Royale (2006); Quantum of Solace (2008); Skyfall (2012) and Spectre (2015). His most notable car wrecking scene is in Casino Royale, where, in an effort to avoid running over Vesper Lynd, Bond totals an Aston Martin DBS in the Montenegro countryside, but only after setting a new world record for the most cannon rolls (seven!) completed by a car ever.
At eight is Nicholas Cage who destroys 22 cars over ten different movies, with Con Air (1997), Gone in 60 Seconds (2000) and Ghost Rider (2012) chalking him up the majority of that total. His first on-screen foray into totalling cars is during the 1996 film The Rock, where he loses control of his yellow Ferrari during a San Francisco car chase, placing it the destructive path of a runaway cable car.
Tom Cruise takes 9th most dangerous drive in Hollywood. He is responsible for clocking up 19 car wrecks over seven different feature films. Whilst Knight and Day (2010) and Jack Reacher (2012) contribute to his total, the majority of Cruise’s scrap car count is accumulated in his role as Ethan Hunt in the Mission Impossible series.
The joint tenth is Jason Statham and Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson – an apt pairing considering the damage they cause in their buddy-action movie, and Fast and Furious spin-off, Hobbs & Shaw.
Just outside of the top 10 were actors including Mad Max: Fury Road’s Charlize Theron and Angelina Jolie, who has starred in high-octane hits including Wanted and Mr & Mrs Smith, in addition to Hollywood stalwarts such as Harrison Ford.
Dan Gick, Director of Scrap Car Comparison commented: “We can already find out which actors swear the most, or how high their kill count is but of course we have a big interest in cars, so we thought it would be amazing to see how many cars have been destroyed on the big screen, and better yet – who’s responsible for wrecking the most cars! It was gripping to see which films were up there, and just how many cars have been totalled. But, if one thing is for sure, it is that the likes of Vin Diesel, Bruce Willis and Arnold Schwarzenegger should be regular customers of Scrap Car Comparison.”
For further information and to watch key car chases the various actors are featured in, visit: www.scrapcarcomparison.co.uk/blog/most-dangerous-on-screen-drivers/
The Scrap Car Comparison team compiled a list of 25 popular action movie actors from IMDB, and tallied up the number of cars each of their characterss has ‘written off’ in every one of the actor’s feature films. It was counted if the actor in question had crashed and wrecked the car from behind the wheel themselves, or ruined it with the use of firearms or other means. Minor damage such as wing mirrors being broken or small dents were not counted in the research.