Fornof regales the audience with anecdotes from his career
as an aviation stunt double. Photo by Phil Weston
Fornof has appeared in countless movies, yet few people know his
that’s part of being a stunt pilot, aviation stunt double, and
aerial coordinator for the movie industry.
has played John Travolta, Catherine Zeta-Jones, and Nicholas Cage,
to name a few. And he isn’t afraid to admit he’s worn some
pretty strange clothing while filming, too
worn more dresses than I care to count," he said to laughter.
packed forum Thursday afternoon, Fornof told about his career and
showed and described how some aerial scenes are filmed. AirVenture
visitors can also see him flying a Lopresti Fury during the showcase
portion of the air show.
has more than 15,000 hours in nearly 300 different types of
aircraft. He holds single- and multi-engine ratings, and has a
low-level aerobatic waiver. He’s been filmed in every continent
except Antarctica, and has also worked as a test pilot, corporate
pilot, and aerobatics pilot. In addition, he is a member of the
Screen Actors Guild and the Motion Picture Pilots Association.
Phantom, a story of a descendent of a line of African heroes who
travels to New York to thwart a criminal genius, Fornof said he wore
purple loungewear, and would spend a lot of time on the beaches of
Thailand and Australia waiting with the red biplane for the next
scene to be shot. "It’s beautiful. I kept thinking I can’t
believe they’re paying me to do this."
showed a clip of the movie, he asked, "So is it me or Catherine
Zeta-Jones?" Then, later, he adds, "I wanted this part,
but the director said no."
also worked on James Bond movies like Moonraker and License
to Kill. For movies he’s landed on highways, been chased by
rockets or shot at, flown through a hangar at knife-edge, and much
movies are a lot of fun to make because there is so much
action," he said. "We would rehearse for days…and do
scenes five or six times."
Besides being fun to
make, being in a movie has one more benefit–getting residuals, he
said. "It’s kind of like having a retirement program."