Parks Bonifay – Stuntman
By now you’ve all probably heard that Nitro Circus 3D is in movie theaters around the country. If you haven’t, you just did. The video features all the crazy ass stunts of Travis Pastrana and his gang of crazy ass friends. Fittingly for all of us, Parks Bonifay is one of those crazy ass friends. We figured now that the movie has come out we should get the scoop on some of what went down while filming. So read along, and if you haven’t seen the movie yet, definitely go check it out. It is hilariously and scarily entertaining, plus it’s pretty fun seeing Parks get tossed around like a rag doll.
1. How did you get connected with the Nitro Circus crew in the first place?
Parks Bonifay: Well I first met Travis at the Projects when he was 16 I was 18. Byerly and I taught him to wakeboard so we just kept in touch through the years seeing each other at X Games and then Red Bull things when we were both put on the team. When they started filming for the MTV show I helped them with some of the water/boat stunt things they were doing. We all just got a long really well, the whole cast and crew is so much fun.
2. Who is the craziest member of Nitro Circus?
PB: I think the craziest of the Nitro Circus crew is ether Jolene or Street Bike Tommy. He is not always the first one to step up to a stunt, but off camera he is a freaking hurricane. He makes Frank the Tank look like a pussy. But all in all let’s face it, Travis is the craziest for real. He’s more nutty than squirrel turds.
3. How long did you guys film for to make the movie?
PB: We only filmed for about three months, it all seemed to happen really fast. Filming with the 3D cameras was a tedious process though. It took forever to do one take some times. You’d be freaking out about to hit something gnarly and then a crew member yells something like “POWER SPIKE CAMERA 2!” and you’d have to taking everything off and wait for about another 45 minutes or so before filming again. You just wanted to do and get it done and over; the anxiety would just kill you.
4. What was the craziest stunt you did while filming for the movie?
PB: We did this stunt called chopper flop. It’s a 120-foot slip and slide down this hill with a 20-foot kicker that could send you to the moon. We would hang on to a handle, lay on an inflatable blow up toy, and then get towed by a custom chopper bike with the back tire taken off so it acted like a winch – a winch from HELL! I was the first one to hit the stunt with the chopper winch in third gear. Travis yelled out “I was about half way through 3rd gear and the speedometer read 75!!!” Wait till you see this shot.
5. What’s going through your head when you’re slingshotted 30-plus feet above the water off a kicker?
PB: Man at that time I was just thinking don’t go into the water in a really bad position . I knew I was way higher than I planned on going, so it kinda upped the risk and ante a bit on trying to “trick out ” or maybe go for 3 flips . I didn’t go into the water in the best position possible, but it could have been a lot worse. As Travis likes to say, “That went really well for how bad it went.”
6. Were you ever worried about getting severely broken off?
PB: Oh yeah for sure. Any one of these stunts could take you out ant any given time. Half the Cast was already broken off to begin with. That’s why they love guys like Crum, Dusty Wyggle, and myself. We’re extra stunt meat for them (laughs) and they’re right.
7. Did anybody get seriously hurt while filming?
PB: Yeah Jim got broke off really bad when he tried to kick flip the car with street bike Tommy in it. They went way too fast and over jumped it and landed right on the hood from 40 feet up. Jim had some head trauma and was put into an induced coma for about a week. It was really heavy, but fortunately he’s all good now though.
8. How was the premiere in LA?
PB: The premiere was so much fun. To see it with the whole crew in a packed theater in LA it was all time. Well worth the wait. This movie is actually really well done in 3D. A lot of the stunts shot were set up for the most epic 3D angle they could get. It’s gonna knock the wind out of you on a few shots!
9. Any future filming plans with the Nitro Circus crew? Are you gonna become a professional stuntman like Yan Lecomte?
PB: Maybe (laughs), we’ll see… If I do this is definitely going on my resume. Hopefully there will be a Nitro Circus 2 in 3D. It was all self funded by those guys so if you all want a second one MAKE SURE you go see it in theaters this week! You won’t regret it.
Check your local listings for theaters and times, Nitro Circus 3D is now airing around the country. And to keep up with the one and only PB, follow him on Twitter and Instagram @parxxx
View the trailer for Nitro Circus 3D here