Now 80 years old, Needham has done more in one life than most men have done in ten. He's just published a book, Stuntman!: My Car-Crashing, Plane-Jumping, Bone-Breaking, Death-Defying Hollywood Life. And in it, he recounts his days doing one or more of the following:
• Stunt-doubling everyone from John Wayne to Kirk Douglas to Burt Reynolds.
• Jumping trucks and boats, leaping out of buildings and off of planes, and breaking many, many bones.
• Orchestrating a team that drove broke the sound barrier.
• Creating a NASCAR team from scratch, racing against Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt, and doing a pretty damn fine job of it.
• Driving in the Cannonball Run, then creating the movie of the same name.
• Writing and directing Smokey and the Bandit.
That's not bad. We discuss all that and more in our chat. He's a hell of a lot of fun, and this podcast'll put hair on your chest. Even the ladies, so listen with caution. And after the jump, check out a couple of Needham's trademark stunts.
As always, we welcome your thoughts, ideas, and recommendations on the podcast. Hit me up at firstname.lastname@example.org, or feel free to call our direct podcast line at 678-389-9173 and leave a comment or question for use on a future podcast. For now, though, click the little arrow below to play the podcast or right-click the link to download. Use the iTunes link to subscribe for your iPod, and use the RSS link for everything else. Enjoy!
- Hal Needham