Chicago PD’s Tracy Spiridakos Makes Dramatic Chicago River Rescue | Chicago Reel
We take you behind the scenes to show you how Tracy Spiridakos and stuntman Kelli Victoria Scarangello snatch Chicago PD. The hardest scene of the season.
Chicago PD makes a splash with its next episode 9.13 Still water. The episode begins with Hailey Upton (Tracy Spiridakos) chatting with Atwater (Royce Hawkins) as she prepares for a jog, adopting a new fitness regimen, which Atwater playfully heckles.
It’s a cold January evening as Upton finds his groove. As she crosses the Columbus Bridge, a car screeches out of control and heads straight for her. Nearly missing her, he flies off the bridge and plunges into the freezing waters of the Chicago River.
Upton calls the accident but with no time to waste, she takes it upon herself to jump into the freezing water in an attempt to save the occupants of the vehicle. As the car sinks into the freezing river, Upton dives and struggles desperately to open the driver’s door. Freezing and nearly out of air, Upton pulls the unconscious driver out of the car. A woman in the passenger seat frantically reaches for him but Upton has no choice but to surface with the driver.
The sequence has a real cinematic feel and Royce Hawkins Recount Marisa Roffman at Give me my remote, “Oh my God, watching this is gonna be like watching one of those old grave robber, films by Lara Croft. Tracy walks in – I think it’s going to be awesome to watch her, with the help of stunts and special effects, and Chad Saxton who led it. »
Chicago PD showrunner Gwen Sigan Recount TV line in January, “I’m incredibly excited about an upcoming episode of Upton. This is one of the most ambitious episodes we’ve done on the show so far, especially from the perspective of the I can’t wait to see what our director Chad and our team do, and to see Tracy in this one.
The scene took two days to film but countless weeks to prepare. Wolf Entertainment shared this video on YouTube detailing exactly how this scene went from an idea to one of the most incredible scenes the show has produced.
They could only throw the car off the bridge in one take, so it had to be perfect. Chicago PD wasn’t allowed to launch the car through the current bridge railing, so they built a ramp and platform that looked like the bridge itself. They had to prepare the car so that it would not have a negative impact on the environment, by removing the engine and all traces of gasoline, oil and other pollutants.
The Chicago River was frozen over in January when the scene was filmed. On the day of the shoot, chunks of ice were floating in the water, making it dangerous for the stuntwoman. Kelli Scarangello jump into the water. A barge must have come in and pushed all the ice away from the area.
Spiridakos shared with us in the video, that Still water is one of his favorite episodes and said they had a great time filming. While Spiridakos and the rest of the cast, and co-executive producer/director Chad Saxton were excited about the scene, stunt coordinator Tom Lowell had to take on the difficult task of making the scene a reality. He knew parts of the scene would have to be filmed on the Columbus Bridge, while the underwater scenes would have to be filmed in a tank on stage at Cinespace Chicago Film Studios, and the stuntwoman Kelli Scarangello should jump into the Chicago River.
special effects coordinator David Green was the one who made sure all City of Chicago guidelines were followed. He had to make sure the car was environmentally friendly and coordinate the crane used on the bridge. Because the car had basically been reduced to a hull, with no engine, no gas, no oil, no fluids, it had to be catapulted off the deck, onto a ramp and a stage they had created, and they had to be sure not to damage the bridge. Also, they had to make the car look good when it hit the water on camera.
Chicago PD takes the safety of its actors and stunt people very seriously and it was important to everyone involved that Kelli Scarangello not be exposed to a real danger of hypothermia. They determined that she should not be in the water for more than 25 seconds.
Scarangello was absolutely thrilled to be able to film this scene and said that “you’re not an official Midwest stuntman until you go to the Chicago River”. She went on to say that “jumping into the Chicago River in January in freezing temperatures was exhilarating.”
For the underwater sequence, they needed to use a tank where Upton could dive at least 20 feet. The tank itself was heated, so it was much easier for Scarangello and Spiridakos to film their parts. Spiridakos not only had to dive deep into the water, but she also had to act and react at the same time. Scarangello was filmed from behind as Upton dove towards the car and struggled with the door. The various cuts have been seamlessly edited together to make Upton look like an incredible hero.
When a Chicago PD a fan came across Chicago PD film the next episode Still waterhe snapped a photo and tweeted, “Please tell me I just came across the Chicago PD recording,” tagging Marina Squerciati, Jesse Lee Soffer, Tracy Spiridakosand Royce Hawkins. Squerciati confirmed the filming location and said, “I think you did! Just Tracy tonight though. I think I’m what will be our best episode ever”
Spiridakos appeared to be in good spirits in this short clip by the river.
She shared her adoration for her double in this Instagram post:
“It was a very cold day. It was the day the amazing @mzkelli_ (Kelli Victoria Scarangello) jumped into the river 🥶 for our 9.13 Still water episode on #ChicagoPD She’s a total badass and I want to make sure the credit for the freezing jump goes to the right person. I never went in cold water, that was all Kelli. Love this woman! ❤️”
Kelli Victoria Scarangello is a professional stunt performer, stunt performer and certified open water diver who was born and raised in Southern California and appeared as a stunt performer in 10 episodes of Chicago PD so far, as well as a stuntman in 1 episode. She is known for her work on Carnage, captive state and Pale Frenzy.
The episode airs on NBC Wednesday, February 23 at 10 p.m. CT.
Chicago PD is produced by Wolf Entertainment and Universal Television, a division of Universal Studio Group.
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In addition to Dick Wolf, executive producers include Rick Eid, Peter Jankowski, Arthur W. Forney, Derek Haas, and Eriq La Salle.
Chicago PD produced by Universal Television, a division of Universal Studio Group, in association with Wolf Entertainment. Filmed at Cinespace Chicago Film Studio.
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