Stunt coordinator, stunt performer and actor Angelica Lisk-Hann continues her Stunt Stars series with the second of ACTRA Toronto’s 2019 Stunt Award recipients: Rick Parker.
Richard Parker, stunt coordinator, stunt performer, stunt actor, co-owner of Canadian Wrangler Motion Pictures Animals Limited
How did you get into stunts and what was your first stunt?
I was involved with rodeo. I was a bull rider, steer wrestler and calf roper. I was fortunate to know some people who supplied horses to the industry. One thing led to another. Soon I was recognized and put to work in front of camera. Bob Hannah started using me on projects. Soon I was familiar to others in the business.
What is your athletic background?
I was on all the high school varsity teams. (My grades will attest to that!) At college, I played hockey and basketball. Winter sports filled my cold months, too. Rodeo came later.
What are some of the biggest challenges you have faced?
The biggest challenge was juggling a very busy workload in the ‘80s and ‘90s with a family and rodeo life.
The only stunt that kept me awake was a high fall for Super Dave.
What does your training consist of?
Our active farm life along with sports and the rodeo kept me fit. When I started, practicing skills meant jumping out of lofts and driving trucks in back fields and down deserted roads.
These days, training is a lot of stretching and telling good stories of way back when.
Any injuries? If so, what?
I donʼt like to talk about injuries. Let’s just say the lifestyle catches up with you.
What would you have done differently, if anything?
It’s been a great life. If I changed something, it would have altered something else. So no, it’s all been part of the process. It’s been a great ride.
What do you love to do outside of being involved in stunts?
The cottage is my place of preference. It’s low key, with kayaking, biking and four-wheeling. And a splash of tequila!
What is the best advice you could give to an aspiring stunt performer?
Become an extra or a stand-in. Learn about key lights and lenses. Behind and in front of camera experience is invaluable to accentuating your value as a great performer. Be respectful and appreciate what everyone else does to help the process.