Friday, 24 February 2012


Lights, camera, start your engines! For one night each year, Hollywood gathers to honour the best in the movie industry. Yet, an often unsung star in these films seldom receives the credit it deserves – the automobile.

Chevrolet, Buick, GMC and Cadillac have produced some of the toughest, fastest, most stylish and most cutting-edge American-made vehicles to have appeared in countless films. From classics like American Graffiti (1973) and Rain Man (1988) to modern action movies like the Transformers franchise (2007, 2009, and 2011) and The Matrix Reloaded (2003), General Motors vehicles have been scene stealers in some of Hollywood’s biggest blockbusters.

“The high-profile association with a blockbuster and classic movies gives Chevrolet, Buick, GMC and Cadillac wonderful exposure to those not familiar with the brand,” said Steve Tihanyi, general director Branded Entertainment & Marketing Alliances. “We are always looking for unique ways to humanize and expose our vehicles to new consumers and there will always be a certain ‘cool’ factor in starring on the big screen.”

Most recently, the Chevrolet Camaro sports car took a starring role as Bumblebee in the Transformers (2007), Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen (2009) and Transformers: Dark of the Moon (2011). Two Chevrolet Camaro Transformers Special Edition vehicles were offered by Chevrolet that sold about 3 000 units, transferring the big screen appeal to the roadway.

The Camaro wasn’t alone among Chevrolets to appear in the Transformers franchise. The Corvette Stingray Concept and a 1965 Chevrolet Malibu also had cameo roles. All three are now part of GM’s Heritage Collection.

“Cars have a lot in common with movies, and there is an often an emotional connection between the audience and the featured car,” said Elliot Wilhelm, film curator for the Detroit Institute of Arts and founder of the Detroit Film Theatre. “You often hear audible groans or see cringes form the audience when a beautiful car is destroyed in a movie.”

Vin Diesel did just that with a Corvette in the 2002 action thriller “xXx” – narrating as 18 cameras filmed the dive from the 223m Forresthill Bridge in Auburn, Calif. A stunt double parachutes to safety before Vin’s character, Xander Cage, escapes with buddies waiting at the river bed below. Diesel later used a weapons-modified 1967 Pontiac GTO as his ride.

Who could forget director Tim Burton’s Batmobile from Batman (1989) and Batman Returns (1992)? It was a “bat”-customized Chevy Impala? Or the 1959 Cadillac that was the chase of Pink Cadillac (1989)?



Anonymous said...


Sean J Cole said...

Does anyone know the 1970s movie The Car? What car was that? Whatever it was it was the scariest car in my youth!