The Bullitt Page

Behind the Scenes of The Remake of the Bullitt Chase in 2019
by Gas Monkey Garage - commercial aired July 8th, 2019, updated July 13th, 2019
courtesy Anthony Bolgona and Frank Panacci, jr.

© Wolfgang Kohrn 1993-2019


Behind the scenes:
The Gas Monkey Bullitt Chase Remake
Report by Anthony Bologna

3 days of excitement
happened in my old neighborhood of North Beach in San Francisco.
  Lights, camera and action on the same streets with Richard Rawlings and his team from Gas Monkey Garage. 

They recreated the famous chase scene of the movie Bullitt that Steve McQueen drove back in 1968, with the 1968 Mustang chasing the 1968 Charger on Taylor Street.


The weather on the set was a crisp sunny typical San Francisco day. Patrol officers from San Francisco Motorcycle division were setting up barricades to close off the streets and reroute traffic. 

Frank Panacci Jr. and I were invited by Chad McQueen to be on the set to experience the chase scene as they remade it in honor of the 50th anniversary of the movie “Bullitt” that his dad Steve McQueen filmed with his company Solar Productions decades ago.

The set was alive with energy during the filming of the chase this second time around. I was thrilled to have experienced it the first time years ago, and even more overjoyed to see it being filmed again this time.


We were reminiscing back when Chad’s dad was on location with Frank’s dad Office Frank Panacci Sr., and how I had wondered onto the set not knowing at the time who Steve McQueen was when I approached him as he was coming out of his dressing room trailer. 

We both walked and talked about who was the star of the movie, he stopped and said “the movie is starring Steve McQueen”. He stopped and looked at me, thinking I was going to ask him for his autograph.
  We continued walking towards where the director was waiting for him and I said “see you around” and walked over to the Charger parked in the driveway.



Filming began for the Gas Monkey crew in the City of Brisbane, where the chase ended.  It was filmed backwards so that they had enough film in the can in case the car did not survive the Taylor Street jumps.  Practice runs with the Challenger and Mustang took place along the same route on Guadalupe Canyon Road. 

The area was blocked off by the California Highway Patrol with only stunt drivers allowed on the planned out route.


With the help of Stunt Coordinator Rocky Capella and his team, they drove the cars to support the visual and to bring safety onto the set.  

This was exciting because Steve McQueen set the bar so high that many chase scenes have been copied over time, but nothing has compared to Bullitt!

Back at the lot in Brisbane, Frank Panacci shows up in his restored 1968 black on black Dodge Charger R/T. 

Most of the crew on the set are much younger and had not seen a 1968 Charge up close and personal…. We have a buzz kill….if it doesn’t fall on the cutting room floor.  Richard Rawlings was caught up on Frank’s car
. (To be continued)
Chris Foorsberg is the stunt driver in the Remake by Gas Monkey Garage. Seems he did very well and kept the one car without any crash alive for the film team, which was extremely important. You can sense that he would have driven even harder, but the 3 days only of filming and the mechanical fitness of the car was a hold back for anyone on the set.

I think without the beard, a wig and some visagist artwork the appearance would have been closer, but that was not the target. The Car Chase and how they did it back in 1968 was everyones driving force on site including Chris, Chad, Richard and the rest of the gang.

Congratulations. Well done.

Chad had his Steeda McQueen Edition #001 on site. They did extensive driving at nearby racetracks and on the streets, whenever possible.
Chad enjoyed the SE very much as Steeda reports. Visible in his many grins.

Everything worked out as planned ahead aside from a few mechanical things that could be solved with the Gas Monkeys team and with R Mustangs Garage on  Bryant Street in San Francisco.

Chad McQueen behind the wheel with close-ups taken.

In the Remake after the Charger is chased down the Guadeloupe Canyon Street, Chad is shown at the whell overtaking the car in a transition and heading towards a brighter future - in Memory of Steve McQueen.

No crash scene at the end. The myth continues.