Rapid Reload removes the question marks from ‘safety and consistency’. I know exactly what I’m going to get, the effect that will be achieved, and I also know that when I put a squib on an actor or actress for the first time, I can tell them with absolute confidence that it will be pain-free. I’ve been asked in meetings, in the past, why we don’t just paint blood hits on actors in post production. For me, and for a performer, there’s nothing more real than to have a small explosive go off on their body. The reactions are real, and I get to time when they go off, giving me more control on the shooting floor.
Resets with Rapid Reload are minimal. They take minor minutes – two, maybe three. In my experience with other squibs, when it’s time for a reset, I know I won’t have that actor back on the floor for 15 minutes, at a minimum. Recently I was on a set in which a stunt performer had to have seven squibs placed on his chest. I timed it from the start to the end of the procedure and it took 6 minutes to place them on his body and get them wired up. Six minutes! There’s no comparison – with standard squibs I wouldn’t have seen that stunt performer for a good hour to hour and a half.
If given a choice, for me as a director, there is no choice. I would go with Rapid Reload.