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Former Seahawk Baseball Player Daniel Hargrave is Captain America's Stunt Double
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Seahawk Nation 08 Offline
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Former Seahawk Baseball Player Daniel Hargrave is Captain America's Stunt Double
https://www.starnewsonline.com/sports/20...in-america


UNCW baseball alum doubles as Captain America
Worked scenes for actor Chris Evans in Marvel’s hit film ‘Avengers: Endgame’

Daniel Hargrave fondly remembers his days of suiting up in a UNCW baseball uniform.

He loved the game. He felt pride sporting the Seahawk colors. His jersey represented a team — an entity far greater than any individual. He played a role in helping UNCW achieve success, but couldn’t do it alone.

A decade later, Hargrave still spent his days in uniform. He donned a suit idolized by many and played his part for an even bigger team: Marvel’s Avengers.

Hargrave no longer threw a baseball, but Captain America’s shield, as Chris Evans’ stunt double in the hit film “Avengers: Endgame.” He also doubled for Evans in Infinity War and once filled in for his brother, Sam Hargrave, Captain America’s former double, in “The Winter Soldier.” Sam served as a stunt coordinator once Daniel took over the role.

In many ways, his baseball career helped prepare him for the life of a stunt performer.

The infielder graduated in 2008, selected by the Philadelphia Phillies in the 22nd round of that year’s Major League Baseball Draft and played two seasons with the organization before he returned to UNCW as a volunteer assistant. Eventually, he made the transition from pursuing a career in baseball, he joined his brother in the stunt world.

“I would say baseball has helped an incredible amount from different aspects. I was never the most talented guy. I kind of got to where I was because I loved the game. I played hard and I wasn’t going to let somebody outplay me and that is probably the only reason I got to where I was,” he said.

“There was lots of guys that were way more talented and faster with stronger arms, but I loved getting out there, getting dirty diving for balls and hustling. That kind of transitioned into this world, it’s the same thing. You want to outwork guys to be the best stunt man and be tough and the performing. I love performing. You kind of get that when you are on the field. People are watching and you kind of have that showmanship and it’s the same thing as a stunt guy.”

Playing pretend

Growing up in Hurdle Mills, North Carolina, Daniel and Sam spent their days playing on the family’s 100 acre farm. They grew up idolizing cowboys from old Western movies, emulating the likes of Roy Rogers and the Lone Ranger.

Sam used to direct Daniel and his friends, filming scenes on an old video camera. The boys would come up with dialogue and fight scenes, sometimes including horse chases. It was a world of make believe that eventually became their reality.

“I never thought I’d make a career out of it. It was just fun being a kid and just how we grew up. Then you fast forward 25, 30 years down the road and it is kind of wild to see what we are doing,” he said.

One scene in Endgame, known as the Cap vs. Cap fight, has Captain America battling a version of himself. In reality, it’s brother vs. brother in a throwback to the old days out at the Hurdle Mills farm.

“My dad was down there while we were filming and he was kind of laughing saying it’s kind of funny to see you guys doing this,” Daniel said.

The effort did not go unnoticed by Captain America actor Chris Evans, who tweeted out his support and called the brothers “legends.”

“Stuntmen and women are the unsung heroes of the Marvel world,” Evans tweeted.

His first time performing as a stunt man was also a fight against his brother in 2010 for the MMA movie Warrior. He remembers shooting outside in a tent in the 30 degree weather, fighting his brother who was a double for the lead actor in the film.

“I didn’t love it at first,” Daniel said. “That was my brother’s thing and I was determined to make my own path. I still thought I wanted to pursue baseball (and coaching) and then he called again a couple years later and asked me to try it again. I fell in love with it and decide this was my route.”

Endgame

There were times during filming where Daniel reflected on his time wearing the Captain America suit. It was the end of an era, and a responsibility he did not take lightly.

“A lot of times you can’t wait to get out of the suit and go home but there’s some days you wear it a little longer because it’s been such a part of me and become such a part of the universe,” Daniel said. “It’s kind of sad and you hate to see it go.

“It was cool. It was kind of surreal. You realize it’s all coming to an end and Marvel has just done such a tremendous job with the whole Avengers. Every character created in this whole universe and seeing it wrapped up the way it wrapped up, I feel like they did an excellent job and being on set with all the crew and the cast.”

There is a scene in Endgame that elicits cheers from theater goers when it’s discovered that Captain America can pick up Thor’s hammer. It was also an extremely special moment for Daniel.

“We shot so many weeks of fighting with the shield and the hammer, but with the hammer you know the reaction the crowd is going to make when they find out he can hold the hammer so while you are shooting the whole time you almost get chills and it’s amazing,” Daniel said. “Even the actors and crew it’s kind of secretive that he can hold the hammer so you can’t tell anybody and while we were filming that was probably one of my favorite moments.”

Beyond the suit

During his time as stunt performer, Daniel has worked on the Hunger Games movies as Liam Hemsworth’s double. His work was part of a stairwell fight scene, where he portrayed the character Sniper, that won the Taurus World Stunt Award for “Best Fight” in the movie Atomic Blonde.

“We were banged up and had a lot of bruises because it was an old stone stairwell in an abandoned building in Budapest and freezing cold and you are getting kicked down stairs backwards and we limped away from it but every bruise was worth it and you kind of wear it with pride, especially after winning the best fight award you got to lick your wounds and wear them proudly for sure.”

Daniel has recently transitioned to some stunt coordinating, where he works with the CBS TV show MacGyver. Throughout his many roles, there is a mantra he learned from recently retired UNCW baseball coach Mark Scalf that resonates in his new career.

“He’s got all these one liners, but his favorite was telling us to pay attention to detail,” Daniel said. “I can’t tell you how many times I heard that in my career from him and think, ‘OK, we get it,’ but I actually took that and ran with it because on set you pay attention to detail. You learn to be a stunt man, you listen to the older guys who have been there that have proven themselves. The guys that tell war stories and you learn and you pick their brains.”
06-18-2019 09:27 AM
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CG_Hawk06 Offline
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RE: Former Seahawk Baseball Player Daniel Hargrave is Captain America's Stunt Double
That's awesome!
06-18-2019 12:31 PM
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CG_Hawk06 Offline
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RE: Former Seahawk Baseball Player Daniel Hargrave is Captain America's Stunt Double
If you go to his IMDB page there's a good clip of a lot of his stunt work. Impressive stuff!
06-18-2019 12:38 PM
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Seahawk Nation 08 Offline
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RE: Former Seahawk Baseball Player Daniel Hargrave is Captain America's Stunt Double
(06-18-2019 12:38 PM)CG_Hawk06 Wrote:  If you go to his IMDB page there's a good clip of a lot of his stunt work. Impressive stuff!

So cool, I had no idea until today!

He's been a stunt man in some of my favorite action flicks. Marvel movies, Atomic Blonde, Deadpool (2) and John Wick 3!

Looks like he got his start way back in 2011 appearing in one episode locally on One Tree Hill. His career started taking off shortly thereafter.
(This post was last modified: 06-18-2019 02:04 PM by Seahawk Nation 08.)
06-18-2019 02:03 PM
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