Stuart Cove himself actually doubled as Mr. Redford for the film, and was filmed acting as a stunt double during several in water scenes.
Cove explains: “Most of the film was shot in a special studio, but for many of the scenes they needed ‘real ocean, sharks, fish, etc. That is why they came to Nassau to shoot the real ocean scenes. Over the mult-day shoot, I doubled as Mr. Redford in the famous small raft where the character in real life survived an amazing 57 days in the Indian Ocean.”
The film chronicles a real life sailor's solo voyage when he wakes find his 39-foot yacht taking on water after a collision with a shipping container left floating on the high seas, then sails unknowingly into the path of a violent storm. Using only a sextant and nautical maps to chart his progress, he is forced to rely on ocean currents to carry him into a shipping lane in hopes of hailing a passing vessel. But with the sun unrelenting, sharks circling and his meager supplies dwindling, the ever-resourceful sailor soon finds himself staring his mortality in the face.
During the filming in Nassau, aside from doubling for Mr. Redford on the life raft portrayed in the move, Stuart Cove’s film crew did a first for a film, Wrangling large schools of pilchard fish (similar to a sardine). Stuart describes the unique wrangling experience: “The director wanted a specific scene of a large school of fish going under the raft, portraying a hungry sailor with lots of fish just beneath the surface if he can only manage to catch some fish. So we purchased hundreds of live pilchards and using divers to literally wrangle the large school, was able to ‘herd’ hundreds of small fish to make the special shot the director desired. It was challenging, to say the least, but our years of film experience came in handy and they were able to herd the fish to get the storyboarded-shot. All in all it was a great experience with the film crew and our dive staff preforming perfectly during the shoot.”
ALL IS LOST is currently playing in theaters all around the world.