Transformers: The Last Knight

The Transformers legacy returns. This time they turn to the past for answers!

  • Starring: Mark Wahlberg, Anthony Hopkins
  • Director(s): Michael Bay
  • Producer(s): Ian Bryce, Tom DeSanto, Lorenzo di Bonaventura, Don Murphy
  • Screenwriter(s): Art Marcum, Matt Holloway, Ken Nolan, Akiva Goldsman
  • Distributor: Paramount Pictures
  • Animal Coordinator: The Devil’s Horsemen
  • Release Date: Friday, June 23, 2017
  • Rating: Outstanding

Featured Animal Action

All horseback riders were stunt riders or experienced actors who were skilled at riding, mounting and dismounting. All running/galloping scenes were well choreographed, and actors used caution while on and near animals. The horse(s) rearing was a trained behavior. The horses were specially trained “falling horses” and “lay down horses” that fell on cue onto a soft landing area. Whenever horses were seen tied to posts/fences, they were attached to lead ropes tied to posts.

In the opening war scene where we see the knights on horseback fighting each other, select suitable horses, water was offered to all horses regularly throughout the day.

Fire officers had hoses and fire engine parked from the fire ball during filming, the fireball and catapult was extinguished immediately. On action a select number of riders all cantered away from the camera. On action, the riders playing the Brits cantered across the hillside, chasing the Saxons foot soldiers. After the stunts, rearing, falling action, a tree on fire at the lower level of the hillside fell over, pulled by a wire, away from the hillside. There were horses in the area near the tree.

When a fireball is catapulted, petrol and diesel were added to the fireball before action and was ignited, setting fire to the catapult as well. On action, the horses had the same start position, on left side of catapult. The explosions on set were only petrol.

Fires on the ground were controlled propane gas. Propane gas was fed by steel gas hose and steel extensions. The diesel petrol mix was used as burning on the ground.

The horses were always at a safe distance from the fires. Each rider adhered to his structured path across the battlefield for each set-up. This ensured that everyone on the battlefield knew the routes to be taken by the horses and so the extras were able to keep clear of these areas. There was a week of prep before filming which involved setting these routes. F

When we see the man on horseback riders on the hilltops or countryside, AH Reps and trainers checked the area prior to shooting to make sure there was nothing dangerous on the path.

In the scene where we are introduced to one of the main characters playing polo with other players (on horses, of course), a camera car was driven down the pathway at the side of the playing field, not on the field. Production utilized professional polo horses. All the riders were actual polo players. For the close-ups, the actress practiced riding the horse prior to shooting the scenes.

Throughout the film, one of the main characters has a dog, seen performing such mild action as sitting/standing/lying, being held or petted, and walking/running on or off leash. For all of these scenes, trainers used hand signals and verbal commands to cue the mild action, which the trained dog was accustomed to performing. In the scene where we see the actor walking his dog on a leash outside his castle, Dog was always on lead and collar and water was always on set.

In the scene where we see the knights carrying Merlin’s sarcophagus, with one horse walked in hand in front and other horses ridden by knights in the background, all the horses were walked 800m from the holding area to the location. The horses were ridden by trainers in costume. After shooting the scene the horses were given water and hay.