Real World article
(written from a Production point of view)

Cheryl Marie Wheeler Duncan (18 August 196012 February 2020; age 59) was a stuntwoman and martial artist who worked as stunt double for Denise Crosby on the Star Trek: The Next Generation first season episode "Code of Honor" under stunt coordinator Glenn R. Wilder.

Wheeler Duncan was married to fellow stuntman and martial artist Shane Dixon until his death in 1999. During this time she was also known as Cheryl Wheeler Dixon. Born as Cheryl Wheeler in 1960, she started to train Yoshukai Karate at the age of 15 at Gerry Blanck's Martial Arts Center and continued with kickboxing, judo, aikido, and grappling. Today, she is holding a second degree black belt in Yoshukai Karate and is a three time WKA World Kickboxing Champion. Wheeler Duncan mentions her hardest kickboxing match being the one against Star Trek actress Lucia Rijker in Holland in 1987. [1] In 1996 she was inducted into the Black Belt Magazine's Hall of Fame as Woman of the Year and also appeared on and in several Black Belt magazines.

Wheeler Duncan is a member of the Screen Actor's Guild since 1985 and has started to work as stuntwoman in 1987. Among the many Hollywood actresses she doubled are Kathleen Turner, Uma Thurman, Darlene Vogel, Goldie Hawn, Jenna Elfman, Cameron Diaz, Kelly Preston, Nicole Kidman, Daryl Hannah, Ellen Barkin, Bridget Fonda, Natasha Henstridge, Sandra Bullock, Shelley Long, Jamie Lee Curtis, and Rene Russo.

She was married between 1999 and 2009 to Robert Lindsey Duncan with whom she owned Genesis Today, Inc., a nutritional supplement company in Austin, Texas and with whom she had two children. [2] [3] She also worked as a stuntnastics teacher at the Stunt Ranch. [4] Following her divorce from Duncan, she married fitness trainer Robert Reed Sanders. The couple was killed in a shootout at her ex-husband's house in Yellow Springs, Ohio on 12 February 2020. [5]

Television work

Wheeler Duncan performed stunts on television series such as Matlock, The Fall Guy, Knight Rider, Hunter, T.J. Hooker (starring William Shatner), Hard Time on Planet Earth, Father Dowling, and Scarecrow and Mrs. King. She served as stunt double for Mariel Hemingway on Civil Wars and for Shannon Tweed and Shawn Weatherly on Baywatch. In the 1990s she doubled Christine Lahti in Chicago Hope, Andrea Parker in The Pretender, and performed stunts in episodes of Mann & Machine, Veronica's Closet (starring Kirstie Alley), and Dark Skies.

Further television work includes 18 Wheels of Justice, as double for Theresa Russell in Nash Bridges, for Jenna Elfman in Dharma & Greg (2002, with Mitchell Ryan and Chris Durand), for Christa Miller in The Drew Carey Show, for Jennifer Garner in J.J. Abrams' Alias, and for Lori Loughlin in Birds of Prey (2002, with Dina Meyer and Stephen McHattie).

More recently, Wheeler Duncan performed stunts in GCB (2012) and The Lying Game (2013) and worked as stunt double for Elizabeth Mitchell on the television series Revolution (2012-2014, starring Billy Burke and with Stephen Collins).

Film work

Wheeler Duncan has started her stunt career in the late 1980s and among her first films are the action comedy Fatal Beauty (1987, with Whoopi Goldberg) in which she doubled Jennifer Warren and worked with Goldberg's stunt double Kim Washington, as double for Janet Jones in the comedy sequel Police Academy 5: Assignment: Miami Beach (1988, with David Graf, Matt McCoy, and Rene Auberjonois), the crime comedy Sunset (1988), the science fiction film They Live (1988), as stunt double for Juliette Lewis on the comedy Christmas Vacation (1989), and for Elizabeth McGovern on the crime thriller Johnny Handsome (1989).

In 1989 Wheeler Duncan got hurt on set while filming a glass dive stunt for actress Darlene Vogel. She shattered her face, jaw, and her right wrist to the point where she lost almost 40% of her wrist cartlidge. The following years she had several surgeries and her face was rebuilt. But Wheeler Duncan had to end her professional kickboxing career. [6] [7]

Not long after her accident, Wheeler Duncan returned to the stunt business and started to work as personal stunt double for actress Rene Russo on the action film Lethal Weapon 2 (1989). Further projects in which she doubled Russo include the two sequels Lethal Weapon 3 (1992) and Lethal Weapon 4 (1998), the thriller Ransom (1996), the crime drama The Thomas Crown Affair (1999), the fantasy film The Adventures of Rocky & Bullwinkle (2000), and the action comedy Showtime (2002).

Other projects include stunt doubling Kelly Preston on the action thriller Run (1991), Nicole Kidman on the crime drama Billy Bathgate (1991), Kathleen Turner on the action comedy V.I. Warshawski (1991), Daryl Hannah on the comedy Memoirs of an Invisible Man (1992), Ellen Barkin on the comedy Man Trouble (1992), the action film Sweet Justice (1992, with Marjean Holden and Patricia Tallman), as double for Sharon Stone on the thriller Sliver (1993), for Sandra Bullock on the science fiction film Demolition Man (1993), and for Bridget Fonda on the thriller Point of No Return (1993).

Wheeler Duncan worked again as stunt double for Kathleen Turner, on the action comedy Undercover Blues in 1993 and on the comedy Serial Mom in 1994. She also performed stunts in the fantasy film The Mask (1994), as double for Penelope Ann Miller on the fantasy thriller The Relic (1997), as double for Uma Thurman on the superhero sequel Batman & Robin (1997), and again for Bridget Fonda on the thriller Break Up (1998).

In 2000 she doubled actresses Cameron Diaz and Kelly Preston on the action comedy Charlie's Angels for which she received a Taurus World Stunt Award for Best Stunt Sequence. She doubled Natasha Henstridge on the science fiction horror film John Carpenter's Ghosts of Mars (2001), Connie Nielsen on the drama Gladiator (2000), performed stunts in Spider-Man (2002) and Ocean's Eleven (2001), and doubled Connie Nielsen again on the crime drama Basic (2003).

More recently she worked as stunt double for Willa Ford on the horror film remake Friday the 13th (2009), doubled Josie Davis on the thriller The Ascent (2010), worked as stunt driver on the mystery thriller Doonby (2011), doubled Jessica Alba's fights in Spy Kids 4: All the Time in the World (2011), Rene Russo in the comic adaptation Thor (2011, starring Chris Hemsworth), performed stunts in the mystery thriller Doonby (2013, with Richard Hancock), and doubled Charlize Theron in the mystery thriller Dark Places (2015). She also worked as producer on the family action movie The Martial Arts Kid in 2014, which features T.J. Storm, Jeff Rector, and stunts by Antal Kalik.

External links

Community content is available under CC-BY-NC unless otherwise noted.