Stunt Performer Spotlight: Sergei Dmitriev

Updated: Jul 1, 2020

Tell about yourself, Sergei!

My name is probably a dead giveaway, and as you probably guessed, I was born in Minsk. When my family and I moved to the states, I became a US citizen and continued exploring my interest in gymnastics. Years of diligent training later earned me a scholarship to the University of Minnesota where I successfully competed on their team all four years of college.

After receiving my degree in biology, I immediately went on to perform as a gymnast in live shows that toured across the country. While on tour, I of course met a girl and followed her to live in Los Angeles where I began training martial arts and pursuing the career of a stuntman. 

What inspired you to become a stunt person?

Before moving to the states, both of my parents were elite gymnasts and had curated successful careers in the circus industry. The circus allowed us to travel the world and meet so many different people. One person in particular, was a stuntman who was a friend of my parents.

To this day, I can clearly remember all the exciting stories he would tell about all the different dare-devil jobs he worked on. His adventurous spirit sparked my interest in stunt work and my dream of becoming a stuntman was born.

Throughout my childhood and into my young adulthood, I felt I had been fulfilling that spark through my gymnastics career, until I finally made the decision to move to Los Angeles.

Since moving to LA, I immersed myself in the stunt world through vigorous training and hard work, as a way to pay respect and honor the amazing stunt men and women who have shaped our industry and paved the way so that someone like me can live a life and pursue a career that was only once a dream. 

What is your greatest skill as a stunt performer, is there a story behind it?

I always find it difficult to try to single-out the best skill as a stuntman, mostly because as a stunt performer we rely on multiple skills, sometimes needing them simultaneously, as it all depends on the task at hand.

So, what I can say is a skill that is always constant through every job, is my work ethic. I am a strong believer in great work ethic because I believe diligence and hard work keeps a stunt performer at his or her best and keeps them safe.

Whenever we approach a stunt, we have to be clear-headed, calculated, consistent, and have the ability to quickly adapt to any and all situations. At the end of the day, I strongly believe work ethic is what sets someone apart.

Sure, raw talent can play a factor, but how you approach a job and how you carry yourself when executing that job, brings a whole different quality to a stuntman’s work on set.

What is the best part about being a stunt performer?

The best part about being a stunt performer is the variety in what we do from one job to the next. I find it exciting that we have these opportunities to work through new challenges and boundlessly explore new strengths, both physically and mentally, being able to navigate through new and innovative ways to execute stunts as our industry progresses.

Being a stunt performer also satisfies my athletic ambitions and gives me a way in which I can express that side of who I am.  

What advice would you give other stunt people?

If I could pass along any advice to those who have just made the decision to pursue this career, it would be to trust that you have what it takes and make the commitment.

You have to do more than physically train; you have to be willing to go the extra mile. Be gracious on set, support your fellow stunt performers, and remember that there is always more to learn.

Be the person who you would choose to do a dangerous stunt with.


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