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Actors and Their Top-Earning Stunt Doubles

Bruce Willis (L) and his “doubles” on location ©Bobby Bank/WireImage/Getty Images

Action-packed movies are some of the biggest box office hits of all time, but most viewers never stop to think about all the movie magic that goes into building such realistic action sequences. Top-notch editing might make it look like one star is doing all the running, jumping, and gun slinging, but in most cases it’s a talented stunt double.

These men and women get paid a lot to do the heavy lifting so famous actors don’t run the risk of seriously injuring themselves. According to one website, your average stunt double takes home between $62,000 and $70,000 per year. Experienced stuntmen and women, such as those who work on blockbuster hits, can bring home anywhere from $100,000 to $250,000, though that is not as common a salary. The hazardous nature of the job, combined with the demands of filming, make this a lucrative—yet difficult—profession.


If they do the job well, they can be sure to get hired back by one of the major movie studios like Disney or Universal. Once they form a relationship with a production company and find a star who’s their doppelganger, these action aficionados can’t be stopped.

1. Denzel Washington and Jeffrey J. Dashnaw

Movie/Show: The Equalizer (2014) and The Equalizer 2 (2018)
Production Budget: $55-73 million per film*
Salary of Stunt Double: Varies

Denzel Washington and Jeffrey J. Dashnaw formed a dynamic duo in the action-packed films “The Equalizer” and its sequel. Dashnaw, an experienced stunt performer, not only bore a striking resemblance to Washington but also matched his physicality and prowess. Dashnaw served as Washington’s trusted stunt double, bringing authenticity and intensity to the thrilling sequences of the films.

IMDb/Twitter | moviemeter/TwitterIMDb/Twitter | moviemeter/Twitter

Dashnaw’s collaboration with Denzel Washington showcased their commitment to delivering heart-pounding action and intrigue to audiences. Dashnaw’s expertise in performing intricate fight sequences and daring escapes elevated the overall excitement and realism of the films. The seamless teamwork between Washington and Dashnaw, along with the dedicated efforts of the entire production team, created an immersive cinematic experience that left viewers on the edge of their seats.


2. Michael J. Fox and Charlie Croughwell and team

Movie/Show: Back to the Future
Production Budget: $19 million*
Salary of Stunt Double: $40,000*

As of 2020, Charlie Croughwell has three decades in the business, making him a certified pro. Not only does Charlie look remarkably like Michael J. Fox, but he can move like him, too. For the parts of Back to the Future that required a little more than what Fox was capable of, Croughwell stepped in.


Back to the Future Michael J. Fox and Charlie Croughwell and team @Kamryn . / Pinterest.comBack to the Future Michael J. Fox and Charlie Croughwell and team @Kamryn . /

The actor and the stuntman have a close friendship, which helped when it came to their working relationship. Charlie also doubled as Marty McFly for the following two installments of the Comcast-owned Universal Pictures franchise. It advanced his career in the business and earned him a healthy paycheck.

The veteran stuntman is often spotted doing interviews and talking about his time working with Michael J. Fox. One of his most recent projects was The Laundromat, a 2019 movie starring Meryl Steep as Ellen Martin, a vacationer-turned-insurance-investigator. The Laundromat won several awards, including a Golden Lion, the Volpi Cup, and more.

3. Andrew Garfield and William Spencer

Movie/Show: The Amazing Spider-Man
Production Budget: $230 million*
Salary of Stunt Double: $75,000*

Next to Toby Maguire and Tom Holland, Andrew Garfield doesn’t always stick out as one of the more memorable Peter Parker actors. However, the star did portray Spidey in The Amazing Spider-Man and The Amazing Spider-Man 2. To help with all the superhero antics in the Sony movies, production enlisted the help of William Spencer.


The Amazing Spider-Man Andrew Garfield and William Spencer @onediocom/PinterestThe Amazing Spider-Man Andrew Garfield and William Spencer @onediocom/Pinterest


Spencer started out as a skater before venturing into stunts with great success. There are many great images of Andrew and William practicing their teamwork on the set of The Amazing Spider-Man. Thanks to editing, it all looks seamless.

Spencer goes by the name “Skate Ninja” on Instagram, and his social media is chock full of him doing seemingly-impossible skateboard stunts. As IMDb put it, Spencer is a “master” at using his “physical creativity…to tell a story.” He certainly seems popular on Instagram, racking up over 87,000 followers on the picture-sharing app.

4. Johnny Depp and Tony Angelotti

Movie/Show: Pirates of the Caribbean
Production Budget: $140 million*
Salary of Stunt Double: $55,000*

Captain Jack Sparrow is better known for his drunk weaving than he is for awe-inspiring action sequences. However, in Pirates of the Caribbean and its subsequent sequels, Jack did have to escape some scrapes in spectacular style. That’s where Tony Angelotti came in. The stuntman stood in for Johnny Depp on several occasions throughout the franchise.


Johnny Depp and Tony Angelotti @Valeriephoebe45 / Twitter.comJohnny Depp and Tony Angelotti @Valeriephoebe45 /


The two weren’t just coworkers – they were (and still remain) good friends. Depp and Angelotti would sit in Depp’s trailer after filming and share glasses of wine together. Depp even gave Angelotti a gift after the franchise ended. The famous actor commissioned celebrity jeweler Neil Lane to make Angelotti a custom replica of the Dead Man’s Chest’s Ring of Thieves.

Unfortunately, he did end up sustaining some very serious injuries during one particular stunt. Angelotti fractured his pelvis, damaged his bladder, femoral artery, knees, legs, and even suffered internal bleeding while working on the Disney feature.

5. Amy Schumer and Meredith Richardson

Movie/Show: I Feel Pretty
Production Budget: $24 million*
Salary of Stunt Double: $40,000*

When Amy Schumer started to transition from the small screen to the big screen, it was inevitable that her movies were going to be as funny as her stand-up and her shows. I Feel Pretty saw Schumer as a woman who finds confidence after suffering a head injury. For the limited stunts in the show, Meredith Richardson took to the floor. Literally.


I Feel Pretty Amy Schumer and Meredith Richardson @Amy Schumer / Instagram.comI Feel Pretty Amy Schumer and Meredith Richardson @Amy Schumer /


Richardson began training as a stuntwoman in college. She added boxing to her busy college schedule because she wanted to become a stuntwoman. After she finished her college exams, she pursued work in show business seriously. She and Schumer are real-life friends, too, with Amy saying, “[I] couldn’t love her more!” on Instagram.

As well as performing in the 2018 movie, Richardson has used her talents in blockbusters like Avengers: Endgame, Black Panther, and Jurassic World. As for Amy, she’s come a long way since her Viacom Comedy Central show, Inside Amy Schumer.

6. Ryan Reynolds and Jonny James

Movie/Show: The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard
Production Budget: $22 million*
Salary of Stunt Double: $80,000*

Lionsgate hit on a winning formula when they decided to produce the sequel to 2017’s The Hitman’s Bodyguard. Inventively titled The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard is set to be released in 2021. Starring one of Hollywood’s most bankable stars Ryan Reynolds in a leading role, it’s set to be a hit.


Ryan Reynolds and Jonny James @vancityreynolds/InstagramRyan Reynolds and Jonny James @vancityreynolds/Instagram


Reynolds does his fair share of tough scenes, but for what he can’t do there’s Jonny James. James has had a busy few years, starring in Solo: A Star Wars Story, Angel Has Fallen, and more. When it comes to working with some of the industry’s biggest stars, James isn’t phased and gets the job done.

Fans of Game of Thrones may not immediately not recognize his face, but they’ll definitely recall his jaw-dropping stunts. James starred in two eighth-season GoT episodes, including “The Iron Throne” and “The Bells.” James has an Instagram account where he documents his stunt work and life among the stars, going by the handle @jonnyjames61.

7. Jean Claude Van Damme and Todd Senofone

Movie/Show: Sudden Death
Production Budget: $26 million*
Salary of Stunt Double: $60,000*

Jean Claude Van Damme was once the action king of the silver screen, beating out the competition across the board to bring the thrills. He still has a sturdy reputation as a hard man to this day thanks to roles in movies like Sudden Death. Todd Senofonte has stood in for Van Damme on several occasions.


Jean Claude Van Damme and Todd Senofone @JCVDworld / Facebook.comJean Claude Van Damme and Todd Senofone @JCVDworld /


Not only did he appear in the 1995 Comcast movie, but he also performed stunts in The Quest, Maximum Risk, Double Team, Pound of Flesh, Universal Soldier: The Return, Knock Off, Legionnaire, Swelter, and Until Death.

One of his most recent movies was a sci-fi/action thriller called Super Shark, which was somewhat of a Jaws remake with a twist. A beach resort is plagued by a giant monster of a shark that not only hunts them in the water but can also travel on land and by air. Super Shark got a 27% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. 

8. Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson and Tanoai Reed

Movie/Show: Skyscraper
Production Budget: $97 million*
Salary of Stunt Double: $100,000*

Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson has a very distinctive frame, so finding someone to stand in for him isn’t the easiest job in the world. Thankfully, Johnson has a cousin called Tanoai Reed who is every bit as ripped as he is.


Dwane 'The Rock' Johnson and Tanoai Reed @TheActionAcademy / Facebook.comDwane ‘The Rock’ Johnson and Tanoai Reed @TheActionAcademy /


Reed and Johnson first teamed up for WWE Entertainment’s The Scorpion King back in 2002. Since then, the cousins have worked on numerous movies together, including 2018’s Skyscraper. For the latter, Reed brought in an estimated $100,000 for his gravity-defying efforts. Reed hasn’t always got off lightly, having sustained multiple injuries over the years.

Reed has had significant work outside of Rock’s movies as well. If you’re a Black Eyed Peas fan you’ll recognize him from the music video for “Pump It,” as he played one of the main villains that Fergie fights in the video. The Honolulu, Hawaii native’s other big-name movie credits include Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle, Blood and Bone, and American Gladiator.

9. Amber Rose Revah and Aja Frary

Movie/Show: Marvel’s The Punisher
Production Budget: $2 million per episode*
Salary of Stunt Double: $75,000 per episode*

Amber Rose Revah took on the challenge as Dinah Madani in Netflix’s The Punisher, but thankfully she had a little help. Aja Frary stepped in to do the fight scenes, making sure that Revah could focus on her acting.


Amber Rose and Aja Frary @amberroserevah / Instagram.comAmber Rose and Aja Frary @amberroserevah /


Frary first started out in the stunt world working on American Gangster. Now, she’s got an impressive resume with many well-known movies to her name. Just last year, she appeared in Spider-Man: Far from HomeJoker, and Jumanji: The Next Level. When it comes to performing daring and dangerous stunts, Aja isn’t afraid to take the plunge – especially when she’s getting $75,000 per episode for her efforts.

Frary, a Seattle native, has won a SAG Nomination for Outstanding Performance as a stunt double. Frary’s dabbling with the MCU includes Iron Man 3. She was also a stunt double in The Dictator, Unspoken: Diary of an Assassin, and Unforgettable, the latter of which featured her as Rosario Dawson’s stand-in.

10. Olivia Munn and Julia Rekaikyna

Movie/Show: X-Men: Apocalypse
Production Budget: $138 million*
Salary of Stunt Double: $130,000*

When Olivia Munn was cast in X-Men: Apocalypse, fans were excited to see what the actress would bring to the role of Psylocke. Her performance was solid, but there was some confusion when Olivia revealed in an interview that she performed her own stunts, only to share a photo with her stunt double Julia Rekaikyna some time later.


Olivia Munn and Julia Rekaikyna @Shadow__Creeper / Twitter.comOlivia Munn and Julia Rekaikyna @Shadow__Creeper /


Rekainkyna not only performs as a stunt professional, but also works as an actress from time to time. Earlier this year, she appeared as an Amazonian woman in CBS’ Superwoman which airs on The CW. She has also worked on Deadpool and Maze Runner: The Death Cure.

Rekaikyna has also worked as a stunt double for actress Courtney Ford (DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, Dexter, Kept Woman, True Blood, Fling, etc.), and Ford has posted about her on social media several times. On Instagram, Ford called her, “My stunt devil queen” and called Rekaikyna “amazing.” Viewers of the performer’s movies can’t help but agree.

11. Hugh Jackman and Richard Bradshaw

Movie/Show: X2: X-Men United
Production Budget: $85 million*
Salary of Stunt Double: Unknown

Hugh Jackman found his stunt double through his sister. His brother-in-law, Richard Bradshaw, has been standing in for him ever since 2004’s NBCUniversal film Van Helsing. One of the more action-packed capers Bradshaw has worked on is X2: X-Men United, where he worked on Wolverine’s stunts.


Hugh Jackman and Richard Bradshaw @MrBushman1 / Twitter.comHugh Jackman and Richard Bradshaw @MrBushman1 /


Bradshaw began working as a stunt double in the mid-nineties. Before that he was part of the British fencing team from 1982 until 1985. Then he worked as a diver for oil rigs traveling through the North Sea. Comparatively, his work as a stunt double must have seemed rather boring when he entered the profession in 1994.

As well as teaming up with Jackman, Bradshaw had the pleasure of working on James Cameron’s epic movie, Titanic. In the Oscar-winning feature he was one of dozens of stunt performers tasked with jumping off of the ship into the water, attached by just a piece of rope.

12. Mark Wahlberg and Dan Mast

Movie/Show: Transformers: Age of Extinction
Production Budget: $163 million*
Salary of Stunt Double: $125,000*

It’s been a long time since Mark Wahlberg was busting a move onstage as one Tencent’s Universal Music Group’s acts with The Funky Bunch, but he’s still in great shape. Wahlberg left his career behind a while ago to transition into acting.


Mark Wahlberg and Dan Mast @villasoma95816 / Twitter.comMark Wahlberg and Dan Mast @villasoma95816 /


He’s known for his ability to handle action scenes, but even Mark needs a hand every now and then. For Transformers: Age of Extinction, Wahlberg’s stunts were performed by Dan Mast. Mast may not be a seasoned pro (he was in his early 20s at the time) but he still got top dollar for his performance. The movie itself was the only feature to take over a billion at the box office that year.

Mast has been nominated for awards, thanks to his on-screen time. He was nominated for two Taurus Awards, something he jokes about on his Instagram, calling himself a “2x Taurus Award-Losing Stunt Man.” The daredevil is in his early thirties but he has already made a huge name for himself in Hollywood.

13. Kate Winslet and Sarah Franzl

Movie/Show: Titanic
Production Budget: $155 million*
Salary of Stunt Double: $90,000*

James Cameron’s Titanic was an epic feature that will forever be known as a legendary example of ‘90s filmmaking. The movie made Kate Winslet a star, but she had the help of Sarah Franzl. Franzl helped Kate get through some of the tense underwater scenes.


Kate Winslet and Sarah Franzl @MrBushman1 / Twitter.comKate Winslet and Sarah Franzl @MrBushman1 /


Sarah would have netted around $90,000 for her work on the Oscar-winning flick. At that time, Franzl was already well-known in the business. Since then, she’s worked on a host of movies, including Christpher Nolan’s The Dark Knight, dubbed “grimly intense” by The New York Times.

However, The Dark Knight isn’t the only DC Comics project on which Franzl has worked. She also appeared in Wonder Woman in 2017. Her other movie credits include Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Fast & Furious 6, and Les Miserables, all of which were huge blockbuster hits in the 2010s.

14. Elijah Wood and Kiran Shah

Movie/Show: The Lord of the Rings Trilogy
Production Budget: $282 million*
Salary of Stunt Double: $300,000*

News Corp’s HarperCollins may run the official J.R.R Tolkien book shop now, but back in 2001 Lord of the Rings fans were looking to the screen to get their Frodo fix. Peter Jackson’s imagining of the literary work saw Elijah Wood cast as our favorite hobbit on a mission across Middle Earth.


Elijah Wood and Kiran Shah @Cultura_blog / Twitter.comElijah Wood and Kiran Shah @Cultura_blog /


Jackson championed the use of CGI, but there were some things that computers couldn’t do. For that, there was Kiran Shah who served as Wood’s scale double. Shah holds the distinction of being the world’s shortest stuntman. He has appeared in dozens of movies since starting his career in 1977.

Shah, who was born in Nairobi, Kenya, has appeared in an impressive 31 films as an actor. The 4’2” thespian has additionally appeared in 37 films as a body double or stuntman. He became interested in movies as a teenager in India, and, when his family moved to America, he got involved in Hollywood. He wrote a book about his experiences in show business, titled Small Voice, Large Thoughts. 

15. Michael B. Jordan and Aaron Toney

Movie/Show: Black Panther
Production Budget: $155 million*
Salary of Stunt Double: $135,000*

When Black Panther was released in 2018 fans could barely contain their excitement. The Marvel character had been waiting in the wings for some time. When the movie hit theaters, reviews were positive. Gannett’s USA Today called it a “visual joy to behold.”


Michael B. Jordan and Aaron Toney @NaTasha Kilgore / Pinterest.comMichael B. Jordan and Aaron Toney @NaTasha Kilgore /


Part of that visual delight was down to the expertise of stuntman Aaron Toney. While Michael B. Jordan trained ferociously to be Killmonger, there were still some things that Toney could do better. Not only did he stand in for Jordan, but Toney also helped with stunts for Chadwick Boseman’s titular character.

He has been nominated for a SAG Award for his excellent work as a body double. Toney in addition to dazzling fans of the MCU with his high-flying stunts, has also appeared in huge blockbusters like Captain America: Civil War, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, TRON, Out of the Furnace, and Wolf Warrior 2.

16. Keanu Reeves and Chad Stahelski

Movie/Show: The Matrix Trilogy
Production Budget: $339 million*
Salary of Stunt Double: $75,000*

Keanu Reeves has established himself as somewhat of an action hero these days. He has starred as John Wick for three movies, with Chapter 4 pegged for a May 2022 release. Reeves has come a long way since he was starring in Coca-Cola commercials in the ‘80s, but he’s not a stunt man.


Keanu Reeves and Chad Stahelski @karinesylviebueno / Facebook.comKeanu Reeves and Chad Stahelski @karinesylviebueno /


The actor first met Chad Stahelski when he was his double in The Matrix. A few years later, they would reunite again. This time, Stahelski was behind the camera as the director of the John Wick franchise. Back in 1999 Chad was pocketing $75,000 for his stunts. Now he’s worth over $14 million.

Before he became a stunt performer, Stahelski was a kickboxer. The multihyphenate has been nominated for a Taurus World Stunt Award for the “Best Fight” category. The 6’1” stuntman is also known for his work on the show Buffy the Vampire Slayer. His upcoming movies include John Wick: Chapter 4 and Nimona. 

17. Chris Hemsworth and Bobby Holland Hanton

Movie/Show: Thor
Production Budget: $150 million*
Salary of Stunt Double: $65,000*

Chris Hemsworth cuts a formidable figure as he walks through the set. Although he never used to be as pumped as he is now, the Marvel Studios-regular made up for it in recent years and put in a lot of work to get his god-like figure. According to Buzzfeed, his stunt double Bobby Holland Hanton had to catch up by eating the equivalent of 35 meals a day.


Chris Hemsworth and Bobby Holland Hanton @FanactuCom / Twitter.comChris Hemsworth and Bobby Holland Hanton @FanactuCom /


What’s more, Hanton had to grow his hair and his beard out to look just like the star. They’ve been working together on the Thor and Avengers movies ever since, but let’s hope that Bobby’s rate has gone up a little bit since the early days.

The Taurus and SAG nominee also appeared as a stunt double for Chris Pine in Wonder Woman in 2017, as well as Inception in 2010, marking two big blockbuster films. Hanton has racked up quite a social media following, thanks to his on-screen time. His Instagram account, @bobbydazzler84, has over 273,000 followers.

18. Bruce Willis and Stuart Wilson

Movie/Show: Live Free or Die Hard
Production Budget: $85 million*
Salary of Stunt Double: $65,000*

Back in 2007, stuntman Stuart Wilson was still trying to make a name for himself in the business. In an industry saturated with performers, he couldn’t seem to catch a big break. Then, Bruce Willis came knocking.


Bruce Willis and Stuart Wilson @Filmindustrypro / Facebook.comBruce Willis and Stuart Wilson @Filmindustrypro /


It was the start of a beautiful partnership. Not only does Stuart look eerily like Bruce, but he’s incredibly good at what he does. Willis might be an old hat at action movies, but he still needs help every now and then. Wilson has continued to work with the actor ever since, participating in movies like Looper and Lionsgate’s Precious Cargo.

Wilson has gone on to win acclaim for his work as Willis’ stunt double, including a SAG Award for Outstanding Performance. Wilson talked about the magic of being a stunt double, stating that when he “pull[ed] off a stunt” that was very “dangerous or really technical,” he felt like “somebody,” even if just for “twenty seconds.”

19. Lucy Lawless and Zoë Bell

Movie/Show: Xena: Warrior Princess
Production Budget: $1 million per episode*
Salary of Stunt Double: $50,000 per episode*

Zoe Bell is a legend in the stunt industry. In the ‘90s, she was doubling up as the titular character in Xena: Warrior Princess alongside Lucy Lawless, but her career didn’t stop there. She was just getting started. Quentin Tarantino took a shine to her and cast her as a version of herself in Death Proof.


Lucy Lawless and Zoë Bell @Thomas Stedham / Pinterest.comLucy Lawless and Zoë Bell @Thomas Stedham /


The thriller was billed as a double-feature alongside Planet Terror in many theaters, including AMC cinemas. Aside from starring in several of Tarantino’s movies, Bell has worked as Cate Blanchett’s double in Thor: Ragnarok and is never short of work as one of the most popular and well-connected stunt women in the business.

The New Zealand native – who will have been in show business for nearly thirty years 2022 – has also had an illustrious TV career, appearing on the show Angel of Death. The web series starred Bell as an assassin who was taking revenge on former employers; a plot a little bit like Kill Bill (ironically, another project featuring Bell).

20. Tom Cruise and Casey O’Neill

Movie/Show: Top Gun
Production Budget: $15 million*
Salary of Stunt Double: $250,000*

We’ve all heard the old Hollywood rumor that Tom Cruise does all his own stunts. And, even in his fifties, that’s actually almost all the way true. Though he does the majority of his own stunts (including acrobatics and being suspended from the ceiling in MI1), he doesn’t do the most dangerous.


Tom Cruise @imgur / Pinterest.comTom Cruise @imgur /


This is probably because studios don’t want to risk losing the money-making face behind the movie. For his stunts in Top Gun and other movies, he had Casey O’Neill.

He’s worked with O’Neill on several of his most famous movies, including Knight and Day and Jack Reacher. Though Tom Cruise is known to dislike stunt doubles, the two appear to be friends.

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