NEW ORLEANS -- Clark Kent, Bruce Wayne and Peter Parker are all characters leading double lives thanks to Hollywood.
Here in New Orleans, Hollywood South is allowing a local woman to lead a double life of her own.
Nurse Holly O’Quin is one of the first people you will often see if you head to Urgent Care MD on Harrison Avenue. She treats coughs, colds and even broken bones.
It’s a career she began more than a decade ago.
“While I was in nursing school, I had an extra career happen,” O’Quin said.
Nursing, patching people up, is O’Quin’s real job, but her real passion is falling down the stairs, getting pushed around and even jumping off buildings.
Holly the nurse is a stunt double.
“I've had concussions, a broken wrist and blown knees, broken elbows, broken noses, the whole entire bit. But they're very rare,” she said.
One of those concussions happened when she was thrown from the hood of a car spinning out on a highway for a movie. She was supposed to land on the grass, but instead hit her head on the concrete.
She also broke her wrist, but still felt good about the stunt.
“I do it because I love the thrill of it. It's a nice, fun job. I also do it for the medical insurance,” she said.
Her transformation from nurse to stuntwoman takes her from alive to dead and from American to alien.
We caught up with her Tuesday on the set of a new CW Network TV series called “Star Crossed” that she’s doing stunts on.
“Today is a big fight scene where she gets stabbed and thrown to the ground and gets shot at,” she said.
She’s done a number of stunts for actress Dora Burge in the show. Holly said she’s in every episode.
“Whenever we're fighting or like being thrown to the ground and stuff and like there was an explosion and she like ran and jumped into the explosion and stuff,” Burge said Tuesday.
Burge is 22. Holly O’Quin is 41.
When asked how it feels to be able to double for a 22-year-old, O’Quin said, “It feels very good. I mean, nowadays, the actresses are very, very thin. And very skinny and it's a hard feat on your body to maintain it even at my age."
Holly's worked on about a hundred movies and TV shows, but how she got into show business is just as interesting of a story.
“I beat her up as a kid. I had to teach her how to do this,” said Holly’s big brother, Jeff Galpin.
When she was in nursing school, Holly said she visited Jeff when he was working on the set of the movie “The Big Easy.”
“I was standing next to an actress, Susan Walters, and I happened to be her same exact height and size and the stunt coordinator asked me if I'd like to get hit by a car.”
O’Quin answered yes.
“We're there for each other. We're in it together,” Galpin said about working with his sister.
He's done stunts in more movies than he can count, working with some of the biggest names in show business. Hollywood South allows him to stay closer to home a little more and, of course, to work more closely with his sister.
“The good thing is she's a nurse and I get in and out the hospital quicker if I get hurt. I get the stitches. I don't have to wait in the line,” Galpin said.
That nursing connection comes in handy on days like Tuesday. Jeff had to drive and flip a car in the Warehouse District for “Star Crossed.”
Holly said she wasn’t nervous because she had seen him do it so many times that she was used to it. But you could see her almost hold her breath when Jeff hit the stunt ramp with the car.
Once the car stopped and the director gave the “all clear”, Holly was the first one in to check on Jeff and see if he was ok. She crawled on her stomach through broken glass in the driver’s side window of the car to try and get him out. The car had landed on its roof.
After catching his breath, Jeff gave a thumbs up to the camera and he immediately wanted to see the shot. It was Jeff's second car flip just for “Star Crossed.”
He and Holly did one together, a stunt first for a brother/sister duo.
“He is my hero in this business,” Holly said.
Jeff came out of the car without a scratch Tuesday, but ironically, Holly, the nurse, had to patch herself up. Her palms were cut up from crawling on the glass to get Jeff out of the car.
“She's probably one of the toughest and best stunt women in the business,” Jeff said.
"Star Crossed" is expected to begin airing on the CW network in spring 2014.
You can see a list of the movie and TV credits for Holly and Jeff here.