Enthusiasts will know that at the turn of the recent millennium, BMW launched a series of films titled 'The Hire' which starred Clive Owen as "The Driver". The eight short films split over two seasons in 2001 and 2002 showcased the capabilities of various BMW vehicles expertly driven by "The Driver". Depicted in a range of scenario's including rescuing a wounded war photographer from hostile territory, teaching a spoilt celebrity a lesson in humility, and a race against time to ensure sustained peace and freedom for a country, amongst many others, 'The Hire' series was essentially a platform for BMW to set itself into popular culture.
With an ensemble of famous directors including John Frankenheimer, Ang Lee, Tony Scott, Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu and John Woo, 'The Hire' short films garnered commercial success and a cult following - which even ultimately spawned 'The Transporter' series of films by director/ screenwriter Luc Besson.
The BMW Z8 was featured in The World Is Not Enough. Credit: bmwblog.com
But of course for BMW, 'The Hire' short film series isn't the only main highlight for the company's cars on film. Its renaissance for this began in 1995 when the brand's Z3 roadster appeared in GoldenEye, which marked Pierce Brosnan's first role as MI6 agent James Bond. This partnership continued on with the 7-Series (E38) in Tomorrow Never Dies (1997) and the Z8 roadster (E52) in The World Is Not Enough (1999).
Behind the scenes of the latest BMW short film, 'The Escape'.
It has been almost two decades since the first two seasons of 'The Hire', and with the brand's latest short film titled 'The Escape', directed by Neill Blomkamp of District 9, Elysium and Chappie, "The Driver" (Clive Owen) kicks off the third season to drive away Five (Dakota Fanning) under the watch of mercenary Holt (Jon Bernthal), who has taken her hostage for delivery to an unknown party. All this surrounds the disappearance of MolGen's (Molecular Genetics) Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Nora Phillips.
For fans of the cars themselves, 'The Escape' will be a treat as it showcases the brand's latest 5-Series (G30) in action. And although the short film brings it all to a close in just 10-minutes, we have a feeling that this is not going to be the last time that we'll see "The Driver". Check out the complete 'The Escape' short film below.
What do you think? Share with us how you felt, and your experience with BMW's vehicle's over the years in the comments!
Want to know what it's like to go through BMW's Driver Training Programme? Click here to learn the proper steering technique, and what happens when you oversteer, or understeer.
Also check out what we thought about the BMW 330i M Sport in our review here.