John Travolta reveals near death while flying on plane: ‘I thought it was the end’

The actor is one of the protagonists of The Shepherd, a short film which tells the story of a pilot who suffers a mid-flight accident which almost costs him his life. Now, he reveals that an identical experience led him to be part of the film.

John Travolta spoke of an experience close to the death that he had thirty years ago, when he piloted a plane to which his family also went.

According to the actor fatit was this episode that pushed him to be part of The shepherdthe new short film which will be released soon on Disney+ and is produced by Alfonso Cuarón.

Based on the 1975 short novel by Frederick Forsyth, the film tells the story of Freddie Hooke, a young Royal Air Force pilot who returns home for Christmas and suddenly faces an electrical failure in his plane while flying. flew over the water.

The likelihood of dying in this setting was almost certain, until another pilot (played by Travolta) miraculously appeared in the sky to help him land safely.

John Travolta talks about his near-death experience

Last Thursday took place the first screening of The shepherdwhich took place in London.

A question and answer session also took place at the event attended by director Iain Softley and John Travolta. There, the 69-year-old actor spoke about a near-death experience that happened in November 1992, on Thanksgiving Day.

His experience was identical to that shown in the novel and which would later inspire the short film.

The interpreter, who holds a pilot’s license, has until now not spoken publicly about this episode. “The point of the project is that I suffered a complete electrical failure, not on a Vampire but on a business jet, over Washington DC, before discovering the book.” explained Travolta, according to the BBC.

“So when I read the book, it resonated more because of this experience that I had personally had,” he added.

Travolta emphasized that he thought he was going to die at that moment. “It had two good reactors, but it had no instruments, no electricity, nothing. And I thought that was the end.

While he was on the plane, trying to find a way to save himself, the actor was on board with his entire family. “I said, ‘That’s it, I can’t believe I’m going to die on this plane.'” .

The view miraculously improved when they lowered the altitude and saw the Washington DC Monument and, next to it, the Washington National Airport, where he was miraculously able to land. “I landed like (Freddie’s character) does in the movie.” » said Travolta after the screening of the short film.

He even praised the film’s lead actor, Ben Radcliffe, for managing to portray the young pilot’s experience “so beautifully.” “It captured that desperation when you think you’re really going to die,” he explained.

Travolta said it took him a few years after that fateful Thanksgiving in 1992 before he discovered Forsyth’s novel.

Around this time I had a Havilland DH 100 Vampire – like the one that appears in the short – and was in Canada recording another production. While walking past a bookstore, he saw a book with the same plane on the cover and felt an immediate connection.

“I immediately fell in love with this book. And my dream was to one day make a film about it. A few years later I bought the rights to this book, but since it was just after pulp FictionI was doing one film after another,” the actor said.

For several years this desire remained stagnant, until it came to light again when director Ian Softley, also passionate about the book, appeared along the way.

According to the instructions Variety the project was originally intended to be a film. Because the pandemic paralyzed recordings for a long time, Cuarón proposed to Softley that it be a 40-minute short film. Coincidence or not, the Mexican producer had known Forsyth’s novel since childhood and felt an attraction to it.

Besides Travolta and Radcliffe, The shepherd It also features participation from other actors such as Millie Kent, Simon Wilson and Steven Mackintosh. It will be available on the Disney+ platform from December 1st.

Source: Latercera


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