‘Dukes of Hazzard’ Stars Revealed How Awkward It Was Staging General Lee Stunt Scenes

by Clayton Edwards
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The Dukes of Hazzard ran for six years between 1979 and 1985. However, the show’s legacy didn’t stop there. Even now, Bo, Luke, Daisy, and the General Lee are deeply embedded in American culture. The heart of the series was the close-knit Duke family. But, the fast cars, beautiful women, humor, and killer soundtrack helped to pull audiences in. It has been more than thirty years since the show’s run ended, but it hasn’t gotten any less cool.

In fact, if you were to sum up The Dukes of Hazzard in one word, it would be “cool.” Think about it. Bo and Luke jumping through the General’s window? That was cool. Hood slides? One of the coolest accidents in TV history. Watching the bright orange Dodge Charger take huge jumps while running from the law? Well, it doesn’t get much cooler than that, does it?

If you watch The Dukes of Hazzard, you know that Bo and Luke spent an awful lot of time in the General Lee doing cool guy things. However, the show’s cast sat down for a behind-the-scenes Q&A session a couple of decades after the show ended. At one point, John Schneider and Tom Wopat discussed just how awkward it was to shoot the scenes in the General Lee.

Bo and Luke Actors Discuss Car Scenes in The Dukes of Hazzard

When the conversation turned to the time in the General Lee both Dukes of Hazzard stars lit up a little. Tom Wopat recalled that he and Schnieder would “spend days together” in the Charger. However, they weren’t having as much fun as it appeared. For most of the series, Wopat recalled, they sat in the car in front of a giant screen. Then, the show’s effects department would project scenery on the screen. They joked a little about how boring those scenes were to shoot.

Then, John Schneider chimed in. He said that they didn’t do rear-screen projection in the early seasons of The Dukes of Hazzard. Instead, the crew mounted cameras on the General Lee. Wopat agreed. He recalled, “We did car mounts. They would put the camera in the side window or through the windshield. Sometimes, they would take a door off and put [the camera] down low.”

Schneider recalled that the Dukes of Hazzard crew once mounted a camera in the trunk. That camera position, he said, allowed them “to turn and look at each other like they do in a movie” instead of having cameras in the side windows.

However, it sounds like they would both rather be in the General Lee with all its awkward camera angles than to be on the back of a horse together again. Wopat and Schneider recalled that they rode a horse once on the show. That shot ended with both of the Duke boys falling off the horse.

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