Whenever the latest blockbuster hits theaters, we rush to our seats to watch stars pounce from vehicle to vehicle, race through a collapsing building or barrel under a semi-truck. With all this action, we often forget that someone other than the superstar is actually performing these stunts. Sometimes celebs, like Tom Cruise, are fit enough to do their own moves, but most often a professional is called in for the job. Enter Luci “Steel” Romberg, a professional stuntwoman and freerunner, who has been in top films like Green Lantern, Zombieland and Terminator. We caught up with the super-fit daredevil to find out how you get into a less-than-mainstream career and what keeps her always coming back for more.
Most people don’t think of “stuntwoman” when plotting out future careers. What made you pursue this path?
I was a gymnast all through college, and a national champion my senior year at Texas Woman’s University. I was a kinesiology major, but there just wasn’t really anything else I wanted to do. I could have been a professor, a physical therapist, a coach or a handful of other things with my degree, but none of them appealed to me. One day one of my teammates came back from acting in L.A., and she just convinced me to give it a shot. When I first got there, I had no idea what being a stuntwoman actually entailed. I was just so pumped on the idea of it that I knew I had to at least give it a try. I’ve been lucky enough to stick around.
What’s a typical day like when you’re hired for a film?
There is no typical day. Sometimes it’s really exciting and you’re working right away, doing anything from falling down a flight of stairs to rolling under a semi-truck, and other days you spend the day waiting around to see if they’re going to get to your segments. It’s definitely exciting though, I love that I don’t know what to expect when I go into work.