Even Dwayne Johnson, one of the most popular actors in the world, needs a stunt double and his name is Myles Humphus. He is the guy who performs most athletic and dangerous tasks and not The Rock. He was raised in Georgia, but after a long time, he appeared in Hercules, replacing Dwayne in some of the scenes, but we can also see Humphus in HBO’s Ballers, Furious 7 and soon in Jumanji and Rampage.
Humphus, a former MMA Fighter described his role in his favorite movie, Tropic Thunder from 2008: “I’m a dude playin’ a dude dressed as another dude,” he laughed. “You’ve got to understand who [Dwayne] is, who the character is, so you have to read the script,” he added, more seriously. “If you don’t, you don’t understand what’s happening.”
Humphus was getting ready to shoot Rampage which inspired an example: “Is there a giant alligator chasing you? Or is there a giant gorilla? You need to know, ‘cause the gorilla is a different character than the alligator. You have to know that.”
He even shot in Reykjavik, Iceland and his job was to slide for a long time at 60 mph and shove a 100-pound prop torpedo into a tank. As you can see, his job is not an easy one, plus he had a series of dots across his face, to replace it with Johnsons in post-production. Humphus commented: “There’s no windshield wipers on the truck. Slush is flying up; Jay Lynch, one of the best drivers on the planet, is doing the best he can. That ice is not flat. I’m covered in slush. I’m frozen by the time I stand up. I’m thinking, we’re going out big time. We’re gonna die here.” They filmed the stunt in 15 takes.
Humphus was active since he was a kid and this man went to a military school where he played football and basketball and competed in cross country and powerlifting. Hollywood discovered him while he was living in a van at the time when he was an MMA fighter. About his career as a fighter, Humphus says: “You don’t ever want to be known as a guy who can take a punch,” he says. “You want to be known as a guy that can’t get hit.”
Stunt coordinator Doug Crosby spotted Myles at the gym: “He saw me fighting, and he said ‘Hey, you want to be in movies?’” Humphus recalls. “I was like if it pays more than three hundred bucks a night, and I won’t get punched in the face, I’ll do it.”
He started working with Brian Smyj who helped the former MMA fighter land his first gig on Saturday Night Live. Humphus remembers: “I abducted Ron Paul and threw him into a van, which is funny since I lived in a van so long.” After some time, he got in touch with Tanoai Reed, Johnson’s official double and he was the one who called Humphus to offer him a spot in Hercules. Myles, who was working on the movie Tracers recalls: “I’m about to jump off a roof when I get the message. ‘If you got a passport, we could use you in Budapest.’” However, on the last day, he tore his kneecap.
Even though he was seriously injured, Humphus said: “I couldn’t allow an injury to keep me from this.” He seized the opportunity and went to the set. “Thank God they didn’t have me doing a lot in the beginning. It was a pain management thing. There was a lot of swelling, but I fought through that.”
A lot of people helped Humphus start and develop a career as a stuntman, some of which are Crosby, Smyj and Brett Chan who worked with him on Iron Fist. Myles is a humble guy, and he appreciates what these people have done for him, but the most inspiring person was Dwayne Johnson himself. Humphus said: “DJ is inspirational. He’s all about focus. You can’t slack when he’s around. He’s not like some actors who show up and give a half-assed [effort].”
He continued: “If they want somebody to run with agility, that’s me. If they want someone big and strong, that’s Tanoai. [DJ] runs really quad-heavy. I try to be a little lighter, more mobile but look like him.”
Myles Humphus is a boxer and a gymnast, and he doesn’t follow the weight-heavy routine of the popular Hollywood star. He is strong and quick at the same time, and he can perform stunts well.
“He can do anything I can physically, but it’s a liability issue,” stuntman explains. “If he gets hurt, production shuts down. If I get hurt, no big deal. That’s why I’m in there. My biggest prayer is they never find the other hundred guys that could do the same thing I could.”
Humphus makes a good living as the double of Dwayne Johnson, but he loves acting, and he enjoys doing his own parts even more. Thig guy even studied theater practitioners like Strasberg, Meisner and Stanislavski. He said: “Fine arts are a way of expressing yourself without harming anybody.I was bullied, and I bullied…I had energy that needed to be expressed, and I wasn’t allowed to.”
His role is usually to play a scary silent guy, and he admits jokingly: “Bodyguard. Bouncer. Military stuff. It’s always, ‘Big Scary Guy.’ I could be more than that. Like, ‘Big Scary Guy Who’s Scared of Butterflies,’ you know? Give him a little bit of something.’”
He is currently writing Lucifer, a screenplay in which he is going to play the main character, and he sees Lucifer as a guy who got a job he didn’t want. He explains: “Lucifer, the guy who got screwed, and now he’s stuck. All you have to do is stop thinking of him as evil, and he could get out. But you won’t, ‘cause you’re too used to it.’”
Humphus also describes Johnson: “He started being himself, stopped trying to be what he thought Hollywood wanted him to be. People love sincerity, you know? He’s what America is all about: Work hard, get big as hell, do what you wanna do. When he was trying to be what Hollywood wanted him to be, he wasn’t happy. Maybe he was, but that was before I came along.”