On the 34th anniversary Lane Frost’s death, his family cleared up some misconceptions about 8 Seconds, the film that Frost’s life and legacy as a world champion bull rider.
On Sunday, July 30, 1989, Lane Frost mounted a bull named “Takin’ Care of Business” at Cheyenne Frontier Days in Wyoming. After a successful ride and dismount, the bull hit Lane, breaking his ribs and severing a main artery. The injuries killed the 25-year-old and changed the rodeo world forever.
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Five years after Lane Frost’s death, 8 Seconds was released in theaters. The movie was loosely based on the cowboy’s life and starred “Beverly Hills 90210” star Luke Perry as Frost, Stephen Baldwin as Lane’s best friend, Tuff Hedeman, and Cynthia Geary as Lane’s wife, Kellie Kyle Frost.
The movie as only grown in popularity over the years, as has Lane Frost’s story. Lane’s parents, Clyde and Elsie, and other family and friends have committed their lives to maintaining Lane’s legacy and sharing his story.
A common question among 8 Seconds fans is, “Is the movie true?” In a post made to social media, Lane’s family corrected some of the fictional storylines from 8 Seconds.
The post, that seemingly was an excerpt from an unspecified interview, made it clear that 8 Seconds was very loosely based Lane Frost’s life and that most of the movie was fictionalized. In fact, the post states that “the one truth in the movie was the scene of the accident that cost him his life.”
As for some of the movie’s other storylines, Elsie Frost set the record strait. In the film, Lane’s relationship with his dad was portrayed as turbulent, but that couldn’t have been further from the truth. According to Lane’s mom, he and his dad had a great relationship, nothing like the movie portrayed.
“Cody Lambert never wrote any poetry either,” Frost said. And, “No, they never lived in a trailer with a guitar painted on it.”
Lane Frost’s family had little creative control over the script for 8 Seconds, and fought to make it something that would accurately protect his legacy.
“It had foul language and just wasn’t what Lane was about. I sat up one night, went through the entire script, and wrote it the way I thought it should be,” said Frost. But, one week before filming began, the director chose to use the first script.
While Frost’s family may have had issue with the 8 Seconds script, they were more than happy with casting.
“When I saw Luke Perry all dressed up as Lane, the resemblance took my breath away. I was so pleased with Luke’s portrayal of Lane,” said Elsie, also saying that she was pleased with the casting of Stephen Baldwin as Tuff Hedeman and Cynthia Geary as Kellie.
Regarding the one part of the movie writers got right, Elsie said they portrayed the accident that took Lane’s life “pretty much true to life.
“I knew when Tuff called that something was wrong, I asked him, how bad is it?” Frost said. “Tuff’s response was, they just pronounced him dead.”
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The impact of Lane Frost’s untimely death is still felt today. The legendary bull rider has been immortalized in songs like Aaron Watson’s “July in Cheyenne.” See the video for Aaron Watson’s Lane Frost tribute below.