Although Hyperdrive is just one of several projects we have worked on recently, it was so big, took so long, and was so epic, that I decided to give it its own section within the site.
In December of 2016 I received a phone call from a production company in west Hollywood, they explained to me that they had just sold a car show to Netflix and would I be interested in chatting with the executive producer about designing some courses for the show. Of course the answer was yes. They went on to explain the concept…American Ninja Warrior meets Fast and Furious…and it was!
2 months later, after many phone calls, I was in a conference room with producers, stunt coordinators, camera, lighting and production people. We spent 2 days throwing ideas out while a story board artist drew our ideas. When I got home after 2 days of random thoughts that usually started with ”wouldn’t it be cool if…..”, I told my wife “that was the easiest money I ever made, these people are bat-s••t crazy and I will never hear from them again”…2 years later, in July and August of 2018 we were in Rochester NY building and shooting the show.
Just a few of the articles written about MCS' work on the Netflix series Hyperdrive...
Imagining an unlikely (but spectacular) amalgam of three diverse cultural icons – NASCAR, Blade Runner, and American Ninja Warrior – is a good start. Ensuring that the inherent dangers (for both contestant and crew) of a show with vehicles traveling more than 90 mph are minimized and/or nearly eliminated is another road down which this one-of-a-kind unscripted show travels.
Hyperdrive had an amazing safety record – not a single incident despite the high potential for serious injury. Or as track designer and safety advisor Martyn Thake (a man who oversaw safety for the televised IndyCar racing series) told me: “Hyperdrive is a huge leap forward in showing this industry how to keep production crews safe without having to compromise content.”
A preface: I am not a “car person,” I have no desire to drive a car, much less race one, and I don’t think I’ve ever paid full attention to a single Fast and the Furious movie. And yet—yet!—I’m obsessed with Hyperdrive, Netflix’s absurd hybrid of American Ninja Warrior and The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift, the car show to woo non-car people, and the best competition show you’re not yet watching.
This is truly the algorithm at its finest. Sometimes, when I can’t sleep at night—haunted by the state of our country, or the Cats trailer—I lie back and wonder how Netflix’s algorithm works. Is it a supercomputer that feeds from and studies our guiltiest viewing habits, and mashes it into something new? Or is there an oversized red button buried deep underground Netflix HQ that the humans press when they run out of ideas?
Blend race-car drivers with an “American Ninja Warrior”-style obstacle course and you’ll come up with a new Netflix series packed with horsepower.
“Hyperdrive,” now streaming, features drivers from around the world testing their skills and putting their own cars through a series of challenges, including a six-story-tall contraption called the Leveler. Actress and car enthusiast Charlize Theron is an executive producer of the series.
Netflix’s new competition show ‘Hyperdrive’ pits drivers against an outrageous obstacle course that looks like something from a videogame.
“Hyperdrive” was almost inevitable. Netflix’s new series combines drifting and video games with a fitness ninja-style obstacle course to create a motorsports competition that was tailor-made for TV.
Fast & Furious 9. Mad Max: Fury Road. The Italian Job. Charlize Theron is no stranger to thrilling audiences with an adrenaline rush of car-focused features. Well, now the Academy Award winner is bringing her real-life need for speed to Netflix’s new reality competition series Hyperdrive.