Steve McQueen – How to Choose a Stunt Double

Wouldn’t it be great if when facing a difficult Saturn transit we could simply create a clone of ourselves who would go through the obligatory experience, while we lounged around with our feet up in a hammock, waiting for it to pass and for the next Jupiter one to come along.

Maybe the much vaunted Age of Aquarius would render this kind of thing commonplace together with the universal astrological expertise to take advantage of it. For now it must remain in the province of Neptune, ” in your dreams “.

Of course there is one area of life where such Neptunian fantasy can be easily played out even today and that is in the film world.

It dawns on all of us at a certain age that the actors playing the parts of super heroes do not actually perform those death defying stunts only to emerge without a hair out of place and instantly ready to make out with the film’s love interest. For the most part they are safely ensconced in a dressing gown in their trailer whilst the seriously dangerous stuff is being filmed. They have basically cloned themselves and got some other poor sod to do the tricky, scary bits. These intrepid souls are called the ” stunt doubles “.

Most of us realised that it wasn’t actually Fay Wray that was hanging off the Empire State building during the filming of King Kong and although we wanted seriously to believe it, there were doubts that Angelina Jolie did all that stuff as Lara Croft.

But there are some actors that we genuinely believe did all their own stunts, and ” The King of Cool “, Steve McQueen would surely be one of them.

McQueen was a truly great star, Oscar nominated for ” The Sand Pebbles ” but perhaps best known for physically demanding roles in The Thomas Crown Affair, Bullitt, The Getaway, Papillon, The Magnificent Seven, The Great Escape, and The Towering Inferno.

Steve McQueen

 

Steve McQueen was a classic Aries adventurer type daredevil. Not only did he have the Sun in the sign but also an apex Venus / Uranus conjunction from the T square including Saturn and Pluto. With this combination, he would be scared of nothing.

The King of Cool obviously comes from the Moon in Aquarius placed in effortless sextile to his Sun.

The screen god that we all worshipped was there in the other T Square between Mars in Pisces in opposition to Neptune which focused onto an apex Jupiter.

Mars in Pisces opposite Neptune creates this extraordinary fantasy on film. Because its Mars, McQueen comes over as the ultimate macho man who triumphs over all adversity to win all his battles.

With such a chart, he surely would do all his own stunts ? Well no actually, this is where the Mars in Pisces opposite Neptune fantasy does kick in. For the really difficult bits, it was all an illusion. Steve McQueen did have a stunt double.

But surely not for the one piece that he was most remembered for, the Triumph motorcycle ride in The Great Escape where he evades dozens of Germans even jumping over barbed wire fences only to be finally impaled on one, particularly as McQueen was so known for his love of motor bikes. No, unfortunately insurance concerns prevented McQueen from performing the film’s notable motorcycle leap, which was done by his friend and fellow cycle enthusiast Bud Ekins.

It seems scarcely believable particularly as McQueen’s chart with an apex T square in Aries so strongly depicts the motorbike chase. And anyway, if you were going to pick a stunt man to do such a job, how could you find someone even more suited to the role than McQueen himself.

Any stunt double would have to look like the actor and so you would pick someone with a chart that has similar features to McQueen’s.

 

Bud Ekins

Just look at the T Square. While McQueen had Saturn opposite Pluto, square to an apex Venus / Uranus conjunction, Ekins had Saturn opposite Pluto square to an apex Mars / Uranus. Both T Squares cover exactly the same degree areas.

Ekins Mars in Aries is the real daredevil doing the death defying stunts. Mars of course is the real action, Venus is principally about how something looks and appears. So McQueen’s apex Venus in Aries gives the impression that he is doing the stunt riding.

Another give away is looking at their Suns and Moons. McQueen has the Sun in Aries so he starts off the ride, but as we all know Aries is good at the beginning of an adventure but often lacks the ability or interest to see it through. It needs a Taurus, like Ekins, to come along and finish the job.

McQueen’s Moon in Aquarius performs the bits where he is stationary, looking as cool as a cucumber, whilst Ekins Moon in Scorpio does the seriously scary, dangerous bits.

The Great Escape was released in June 1963 and established McQueen’s box-office clout and secured his status as a superstar.

Both of his T Squares were being strongly transited at the time. Pluto was square to his apex Jupiter in 1963.

Even more significantly Jupiter was exactly conjunct both McQueen’s apex Venus and Ekins apex Mars in June 1963.

McQueen and Ekins relationship was renewed for the film ” Bullitt ” which featured an unprecedented (and endlessly imitated) auto chase through San Francisco. Although McQueen did do the driving that appeared in closeup, this was about 10% of what is seen in the film’s car chase. The rest of the driving was done by Ekins and another stunt driver, Loren Janes.

 

Loren Janes

 

If you thought the astrological match up between McQueen and Ekins was scarcely credible, this one takes the whole thing to a different dimension. Janes has exactly the same Saturn / Pluto/ Uranus T Square but it is turned into a Grand Cross by Venus at 14 Libra, exactly opposite McQueen’s Venus.

Bullitt was released in 1968, when Saturn was conjunct McQueens apex Venus, conjunct Ekins apex Mars and opposite Janes Grand Cross Venus.

Steve McQueen’s career went on to great heights and reached its peak whilst Pluto was opposite his Sun in 1972 – 4. During this transit he was the world’s highest paid actor. But in true Pluto style after 1974’s The Towering Inferno, McQueen all but disappeared from the public eye, to focus on motorcycle racing and traveling around the country in a motorhome and on his vintage Indian motorcycles.

Like so many great stars, Steve McQueen tragically died of cancer in November 1980 at the age of 50. Both Jupiter and Saturn were exactly opposite his Sun at the time.

To many of Capricorn Research’s generation he will always be the ” King of Cool ” even if he needed a bit of astrological help with some of his stunts. Don’t we all sometimes.

 

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