Türkiye'de BMX'in Sesi! | Voice of BMX in Turkey!

Akman Atılgan 02.08.2017

Bob Haro Illustration by: Lixy B Steven Spielberg Illustraion By: Robert Nippoldt

E.T.(The Extra-Terrestrial) is a well known movie by people who lived in the 80'ies. Directed by Steven Spielberg in 1982, E.T. has significance especially for old BMX'ers like us. Because the sport owes its boom of popularity to this movie. The 3.5 minutes of BMX chase is an unforgottable scene and after the release of the movie BMX passion spread among the kids all over the world and almost every single kid wanted to have a BMX.

About 3 months ago I went to a DVD shop and asked if I could find E.T. in Turkish. My purpose was to make my daughter watch the movie. The shop keeper said "no problem" and in two hours he was able to find a copy. My 7 year old daughter watched the movie three times that week. It is rare for an old production to be watched by a young younger generation with an enthusiasm like this. I hadn't watched it for almost 20 years or so and it almost gave me the same feeling. Such a successful production! And if you have a BMX history the feeling is even better.

While my memory with the movie is still fresh after watching it, yesterday I saw Bob Haro sharing his letter he wrote to Steven Spielberg. That was a funny coincidence as I had met Bob in Cologne about 10 days ago and my memory with the movie was still fresh. So I wanted to write this article and share it:

My name is Bob Haro and I was one of the lead BMX stunt riders in your film “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial.” Our mutual friend Tracey Seaward gave me your company’s contact details so I could write to you directly.

I worked on the second unit with Gene Randal and his team, filming the epic BMX chase scene in your film. I was the rider wearing the ski mask and army jacket closest to the camera, and was showing off as the police chased us down the terraced hills in Porter Ranch.

Please find prints from my personal archives for you, from that day in Porter Ranch. As you may recall, these images were taken on a very hot day when the chase scene was shot.

After E.T. was released, my BMX career exploded. I was a young professional BMX rider and traveled the world showing kids the new sport of freestyle BMX. I always shared stories about my part in the film.

From all of us BMXers I say “thank you.” E.T. was the tipping point our fledgling sport needed to give it notoriety and a global push that ignited the BMX passion of millions of kids around the world.

Best Regards,

Bob Haro"

We will see if and how Spielberg will respond to this letter, but I can imagine how Bob Haro was feeling when he was writing it. As BMX'ers, we can't thank enough to both Bob Haro and Steven Spielberg for their efforts to make BMX a great and recognized sport. (especially these days BMX Freestyle being an olympic sport)  Therefore on behalf of all BMX lovers I would like to thank them both. And can't help sharing my picture "from my personal archieves" which was taken in a cold rainy day in Madame Tussauds Museum in Amsterdam!