• Brendan Fraser’s dangerous stunt during
    The Mummy
    knocked him out but didn’t stop his dedication to the role.
  • Fraser insisted he wear a noose during a stunt, rather than let a dummy do it. However, it knocked him unconscious for ten seconds.
  • The Mummy
    remains popular to this day, sparking a franchise that could still be continued today.

As The Mummy turns 25, director Stephen Sommers reflects on the franchise and a dangerous stunt that knocked out star Brendan Fraser. The Mummy opened in 1999 to mediocre reviews, but it grossed over $400 million worldwide and spawned two sequels, a reboot, and a spinoff. The sequel, 2001’s The Mummy Returns, also directed by Sommers, received even lower reviews but still made $443 million worldwide. The spinoff, The Scorpion King, starring Dwayne Johnson, didn’t perform as well, scoring a 41% Rotten Tomatoes score from critics and only making $180 million worldwide.

In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Sommers talks about a dangerous stunt that actually knocked out Fraser. The stunt came when Fraser’s character, Rick O’Connell, is hung from a rope. The stunt is common and is usually performed by a dummy wearing a bag over its head, but Sommers and his crew, possibly aiming for authenticity, used Fraser instead, which had unexpected consequences. Read the full quote below:

We had a great stunt team, but Brendan is a big, tough guy, and he was younger back then. We kind of beat the crap out of him. Everybody talks about the scene when he gets hung. Usually when somebody gets hung, it’s a dummy, and that’s why they put bags over people’s heads. Brendan was always gung-ho, and he was like, ‘Make the noose really tight on me.’ Then he decided to let his knees sag a little bit. But what he forgot is that
the minute you put that much pressure on your carotid arteries, it knocks you out.
We all looked, and he’s completely unconscious. It was fine, and he recovered in 10 seconds. But he woke up like, ‘What happened?’

Does The Mummy Hold Up 25 Years Later?

The Mummy Has Achieved Cult Favorite Status

Much of the film’s longstanding success could be attributed to Fraser’s performance as the tough but endearing Rick.

The Mummy and its sequel have somewhat received a cult status throughout the years, though the same can’t be said for its successors. Besides the third film and the spinoff, the 2017 The Mummy reboot, which starred Tom Cruise and Russell Crowe, was critically panned, but it made over $400 million at the box office. The recent failures, however, haven’t hindered The Mummy’s cult status, as the film is still held with high regard among fans.

The 2017
currently has a 15% critics score on Rotten Tomatoes.

Much of the movie’s longstanding success could be attributed to Fraser’s performance as the tough but endearing Rick. Fraser has seen somewhat of a comeback to Hollywood, as his performance in 2022’s The Whale earned him an Oscar. He also starred in Martin Scorsese’s Killers of the Flower Moon, hinting that the actor could become far more active in the coming years. At the same time, his performance as Rick remains a favorite among many.

The Mummy’s stunts and VFX have also aged well over the years, not counting the abysmal CGI of Johnson’s Scorpion King in the second film. Sommers himself has said that he’s willing to work with the actors from his Mummy franchise again, but the reunion would have to be for something really special. With Fraser’s comeback to Hollywood and the continued interest in Egyptian lore, The Mummy franchise’s comeback, while unlikely, isn’t completely out of the question.

The Mummy
is available to stream on Peacock.

Source: THR

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