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During his time in the X-Men franchise, Patrick Stewart has rolled around in a few very awesome wheelchairs, but one of them can truly be called king. Moving beyond the need for wheels, X-Men: Days of Future Past had the leader of the X-Men riding around in a specially designed chair that let him float around on air. Given the nature of filmmaking these days, you might have thought that the movement of this transport was created using visual effects, but it turns out that's not the case. Instead, the production apparently built a really floating chair for Patrick Stewart to sit in.
Currently out promoting his new Showtime series Blunt Talk, Stewart recently took to Reddit for a special Ask Me Anything session, and it was in answering a fan's question that the actor revealed the realities behind Xavier's Days of Future Past ride. Asked by a user what the best part of playing Professor X is, Stewart responded,
Great costumes in every film, but I loved my superhero costume and my flying chair in Days of Future Past. The chair actually levitated, but only a few inches.
\Sadly, Patrick Stewart didn't elaborate on this fascinating detail or why or how they did it, but my first reaction is to really applaud Bryan Singer and the X-Men: Days of Future Past production. It would have been incredibly easy for the movie to just hoist Professor X's chair with a crane, and then digitally remove the wires, but the crew instead to go the more interesting route. It's a road less taken these days, and it's great that such a big movie would employ something like this.
So how exactly did the film get this done? The safe bet is that they did it with some very powerful magnets, both attached to the bottom of the chair, and embedded in the floor. It's the same approach that Lexus took with their new hoverboard, featured in the viral video found below:
Fans will note that this is actually the second interesting filmmaking trick that has been revealed as part of the X-Men: Days of Future Past production - the first being the badass way the Quicksilver "Time In A Bottle" sequence was filmed. It just makes me wonder what kind of fun stuff Bryan Singer has in store for X-Men: Apocalypse. We'll find out when it hits theaters on May 27, 2016.