It’s hard to imagine anyone bigger than Dave Bautista. The former wrestling star turned actor is an imposing 6’6” and 130kg/290lb/20st 7lb, according to his billed stats. Whichever way you look at it, the actor, famous for playing Guardians of the Galaxy’s Drax in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, is a man mountain. So when he was pitted against a human EVEN BIGGER than him in his new film Final Score – which is essentially Die Hard in a football stadium – it’s fair to say his jaw dropped.
Bodybuilder and actor Martyn Ford plays Russian bad guy Vlad in the film – and weighs in at 320lb, standing at a towering 6’8”. The pair grapple in an epic kitchen fight that could just about be the most brutal hand-to-hand scuffle in any action movie of the last decade. Bautista reveals that he was hitting the British behemoth with props that he thought were constructed to break on impact, but which were, in fact, the real thing. And his opponent didn’t even flinch.
Bautista told us: “Martyn Ford is one of the hugest human beings that I’ve ever met in my life, and we needed that guy. Because I’m a bigger person and we needed someone even larger than me to feel like he was that threat.
“There was a couple of times where I was supposed to hit him over his head [in the kitchen fight scene] and I thought that they were going to be breakaway things – but things were getting mixed up, and shoveled, and [there were] a lot of resets. [So] there were a couple of times where I just whacked him over the head with things that weren’t breakaway, and I swear they broke anyway and he did not flinch. I’m sure they have some outtakes of that with me actually hitting him with things over the head. And I’m so quick to come out of character, and he just had a laugh. But I was like, ‘Oh my god, I’m so sorry.’”
Goliath Vs Goliath
One of the props that Bautista hit Ford over the head with was a big, really hard, plastic vase that he thought was made of sugar glass.
“I hit him over the head with it thinking it was going to shatter but the handle just broke off,” laughed Bautista. “It was hard plastic and he had this great big red mark on his head. I think your average person it probably would have done some damage to, but Martyn is indestructible. So we had a lot of fun with that scene!”
Final Score hits screens in the UK on September 7 and the US on September 14. Here’s the official synopsis:
Believing his traitorous brother Dimitri (Pierce Brosnan) is somewhere in the stadium, Arkady (Ray Stevenson), the former leader of a revolution in the Russian state of Sukovia, locks down the Boleyn Ground during the European semi-final between West Ham United and Dynamo FCC. In the crowd with his niece, Danni (Lara Peake), is US veteran Mike Knox (Dave Bautista), who stumbles upon the plot and goes about taking out Arkady’s heavily armed team. Can he get to Arkady before Arkady gets to Dimitri? The fate of 35,000 people inside the stadium – and many more in Russia – depends on it…