Tell about yourself and stunts, Colby!
I was raised in Litchfield, New Hampshire where I started dancing at the age of 4, competing nationally until I was 18. After high school, I worked as a professional dancer for many years.
I was fortunate enough to travel the world and work with many artists from around the globe. Some of my dance credits include: Le Reve (The Dream) Pussycat Dolls Criss Angel Latin Grammy’s Wella International Royal Caribbean International After my dance career, close friends suggested transitioning into stunts. From my years of performing, I had many applicable skills which would be beneficial to a stunt performer, from tumbling to aerial work.
Once I began my journey into stunts, I learned there were many new skills to acquire. I began trainings which included martial arts, weapons, gymnastics and wirework.
From my first job until now, I have not stopped training and learning. I have found joy in growing as a performer in this community, I look forward to many years of passionate learning and performing ahead.
What inspired you to become a stunt person? From a young age I knew I wanted to be a performer. After dance, I was looking for a new outlet to perform, which ultimately led me to stunts. I grew up with 3 brothers (as the only girl) so I felt at home in stunts from the beginning.
Something I have realized now, later in life, is a lot of inspiration came from my brothers early on. Now that I’m here, my inspiration comes from the incredible bad-ass women who have paved the way.
They continue to push boundaries and make a bigger space for women in the industry. Everyone, from women to men, top to bottom, young, old, new, veteran, all inspire me to keep training, pushing and learning.
What is your greatest skill as a stunt performer, is there a story behind it? I would say that my greatest skill as a stunt performer would be adaptability. Growing up as a dancer we were taught at a young age to take notes and correct/change things at a moments notice.
Beyond that, being hyper aware, not just in regards to my performance, but knowing what is happening around me at all times. I have come to learn and understand the in’s and out’s of how a set works, and like to think and look outside my individual role on any given day.
What is the best part about being a stunt performer? That feeling you have when your gag is up! There is always this amazing sense of respect on set when stunts are up. Every department turns to the stunt team putting the action together and lets us do what needs to be done.
The camaraderie amongst everyone wanting you to nail it, take that wreck, jump out that window 365’ up is like no other. When it’s all said and done and everyone is happy with the performance, the director is through the moon, the actor you are doubling thanks you and your coordinator knows they made the right choice in using you for that spot! It's the best feeling!
What advice would you give other stunt people? Train hard, know the limits of your abilities, be honest, be professional. You are going to get hired based on your skills and professionalism.
Word of mouth is everything in this community and you want people in your corner that can speak highly of you. Never stop learning and growing.
Tell your all-time personal favorite stunt story! Over the course of my career, I have been very fortunate to experience some amazing things. I have traveled the world, performed on some of the biggest stages. When you think you’ve done it all and a job is just another job, every once in a while we are re-grounded, remembering how lucky we are, and how exciting this career is.
I will preface this story with a fact about myself. I have long been sure that I don’t ever get starstruck. Last year, I was working on the re-shoots of Bad Boys 3 and was blind-sided with a realization. It was really cool to be working along side Will Smith and Martin Lawrence.
I watched these two actors on screen as a kid, and this was a movie franchise I loved. To be a small part of it so many years later was incredible. I had that moment of, “This is my job!?” Never in a million years did I think I would ever be on that set. The cherry on top, was tackling Will Smith!
Stunt Players Directory: https://www.stuntplayers.com/player/colby-lemmo/