THE MAKING OF
The making of Stuck
The majority of the Stuck movie takes place in a single location (the inside of a subway car), which presented some unique challenges when it came to filming. For one, the Stuck cast and crew had to deal with cramped conditions. No one who has ridden the subway would describe it as “spacious,” and it wasn’t just the cast that had to squeeze in. While the audience only sees the cast, there’s a whole crew who is present for every shot, not to mention the equipment needed to actually make a movie.
Keeping those crew members and their equipment unseen was the second problem the Stuck team faced. In a genuine subway car there’s a lot of glass (windows on each side), which creates a real nightmare when trying to ensure the crew doesn’t inadvertently show up in any shots.
Last but not least, MTA (Metropolitan Transportation Authority) officials were not too keen on letting the Stuck team take up time or space on the actual subway platforms or cars.
Stuck’s Director, Michael Berry, could have opted for an old subway car, but the team really wanted the film to feel authentic and match what a passenger would see today.
Therefore, the Stuck crew had to get creative. In order to give the appearance of being in a subway car without the cast actually being in a subway car, a replica was built in Brooklyn. In fact, a whole underground set was constructed in Brooklyn’s Pfizer building, and that’s where most of the train scenes in Stuck were filmed.
The Pfizer building fit Stuck production perfectly. There were no windows, so it actually felt like being underground.
The car the Stuck team built was nearly identical to a real New York City subway car in operation today. For example, one of the only differences was the bar hand-holds, which were a quarter inch wider than on a real subway car.
The Stuck crew strung up flashing lights outside of the car to simulate movement when the train was supposed to be passing through a tunnel. To continue the illusion of movement, the cast actually simulated it with their bodies. For instance, on stops and starts, they pretended to lurch a little bit.
The Stuck movie was lucky enough to get access to a real train operated by MTA for four days of filming, so there are some real car shots in the film. Having the Stuck replica so closely match a real subway car paid off as the crew already knew how to move and position themselves and the shots blended together seamlessly.
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