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almost 400 pounds!
He was huge! And Sonny scared him.
He came down and quit.
Craig Baxley remembers working
with Landham on "The Warriors":
I needed somebody in the subway
I could throw a bat at,
a line drive hitting him in the shins,
pinwheeling him like a rag doll.
Sonny Landham was definitely
the right choice.
Sonny got his SAG card on
The Warriors for that one gag.
Joel loved him so much,
he put him in 48 Hrs and Predator.
After Predator, Joel gave me
my first shot at directing first unit
on Action Jackson.
During our casting sessions,
he said "Do you mind using Sonny?"
I said "As what?"
He said "What else? The heroin dealer. "
I said "The guy who gets thrown
out the window, across the alley
and in through the window
on the opposite side?"
Joel smiled.
I said "Sure, he'd be perfect. "
(Anderson) People often forget that silence
can be an extremely loud sound effect.
(Stone) He knew that often the suspense
of the story depended on the silence.
This is one of the quietest macho
action movies. Quite seriously.
(Anderson) Dave, you dealt mainly with
what we'll call "hard effects" - the impacts.
(Stone) And also worked
with John P on the design stuff.
(Anderson) That's John P, as in P period.
His official name is John Pospisil.
He designed the Predator's suit
camouflage coming on and off.
(Stone) We worked together
on the snap to the Predator Vision.
(Anderson) I know one of
the elements was a whip crack.
(Stone) I think John P came up
with some tonal modifiers
that gave it that angry, ugly darkness.
(Anderson) What John tends to do
is take a sound element and EQ,
change the speed of it,
play it backwards - that kind of thing.
I always suspected
that snap was stolen by Fox
for that Hard Copy or A Current Affair
show's triangle logo sound.
(Helfrich) We completed the cut in a couple
of weeks, and showed it to the studio.
This was basically my cut of the film.
McTiernan hadn't really gotten in there yet.
As I recall, the purpose of
screening it for the studio
was that Joel had gotten
the studio half-pregnant.
He shot the majority of the film,
but he didn't shoot the creature...
which is the main thing!
So there was no backing out.
He needed more money to get the film right.
We showed it to the studio,
the studio loved it.
(Baxley) I think the original editor on it
was brilliant. And his cut's the movie.
(Helfrich) During the hiatus,
Craig Baxley got a movie to direct.
He loved the attack scene that I cut,
and he asked me to edit Action Jackson.
Since it was another Joel Silver
film, Joel said "Go ahead. "
So I left Predator and went onto
Action Jackson, leaving Link to finish it up.
Craig Baxley and I ended up working together
for several years on several films.
Action Jackson was a lot of fun.
Some films are of their period.
And Action Jackson is so '80s.
(Link) Basically,
the entire film had been edited
except for the end sequence
and a couple of pick ups,
so there was not that much to do
except to go through and finesse everything.
Helfrich's work was absolutely
wonderful. He did a fabulous job.
I probably would not have changed
one frame of what he did.
John McTiernan had different ideas.
So we reworked things.
Not that it would be better, but it
was somebody else's interpretation.
It was just a personality conflict,
which I've had many a time.
According to Helfrich, the use of
the original creature in this scene
is what prompted the production shutdown.
(Helfrich) It looked like a giant red lobster.
You see this shot of this lobster,
this guy in a red suit with
these big claws dragging Shane Black,
and it was just so hilarious.
In the cut presented to the studio:
(Helfrich) All the heat-vision
stuff was already cut in.<

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