Cody Bollinger, a former mixed martial artist and veteran of Bellator MMA, WSOF (World Series of Fighting, Now Professional Fighters League (PFL)), Titan FC, and RFA (Resurrection Fighting Alliance) now finds himself in front of a camera in Hollywood since retiring three years ago. As a SAG-AFTRA stunt man, Bollinger has transitioned his athletic abilities from fighting, to stunt double for two of Netflix’s top shows, 13 Reasons Why and Kingdom.
On the Carroll’s Corner MMA Podcast, Bollinger explains how he stumbled into being a stunt double on these two shows. Since becoming a stunt double, he landed a small role in the show because of his MMA background. In the Netflix hit TV show, Bollinger fought one of the main characters in a boxing match. He spoke what it was like creating a fake scene in the show and mentioned the amount of freedom with choreographing a fight scene him and the other actor were allowed by the director.
Kingdom, another show that has been on Apple TV is now streaming on Netflix, just launched their third season and Cody Bollinger discusses the opportunities being in these two shows have created for him.
We also spoke about the lack of pay for fighters in the UFC and across MMA. MMA fight contracts ended up leaving the fighter, the person doing all the work with little to no money, unless you’re the top 1% in the game. Fighters may get $50,000/$50,000. Which is $50k to show and $50k for winning. If a fighter loses, it’s only $50k. Now deduct gym fees which is usually covering their coaches in there. That’s usually around 25%. Then if the fighter has a manager, deduct another 10% from their earnings. 35% right there they are all ready paying others. Now, taxes. Take the state they live in, the state they fight in, or country, and then federal taxes are deducted. We are talking about another 35%-45% in taxes. After all the bills are paid, it leaves about 25%-30% for the fighter themselves.
Bollinger mentioned how hes apart of SAG-AFTRA (Screen Actors Guild – American Federation of Television and Radio Artists) union. Since being a member, it will allow him to make more money and add to his 401k. In addition to being a Stunt man, the former MMA fighter also works full-time in addition to being a stunt man.
Bollinger also announced that he and his significant other are expecting another baby. Congratulations!