Jackie Chan, best known for a relentless commitment to doing his own stunts, freaked out a bunch of Londoners yesterday morning by blowing up a bus in the middle of the city. Bystanders flipped out—a reasonable reaction—when the vehicle burst into flames atop the Lambeth Bridge, which is across the Thames from the London Eye.
The effect was not an act of terrorism, as several Tweeters initially thought, but a stunt for Chan's upcoming movie with Pierce Brosnan, The Foreigner. The internet is bemoaning the lack warning about the controlled explosion—a few nearby signs and an obscure tweet from an account with less than 40k followers were the only notice that a lethal-looking conflagration was about to happen in broad daylight in the center of one of the biggest cities in the world. Not cool, Jackie Chan.
That said, nobody was actually hurt and the footage is pretty tight. The onlookers in the above video seem more intrigued and excited by the explosion than freaked out. Betting on legitimate practical effects over CGI when possible is part of what made films like Mad Max: Fury Road and Star Wars: The Force Awakens so successful. Not that we expect The Foreigner to be in that echelon by any means, but it's pleasant to see the 61-year-old king of martial arts comedy still kicking after all these years.
Check out Tony Zhou's excellent video essay about why Jackie Chan's physical comedy will never get old, even if he does, below.