„Ihr Revier ist die Autobahn. Ihr Tempo ist mörderisch. Ihre Gegner: Autoschieber, Mörder und Erpresser. Einsatz rund um die Uhr für die Männer von Cobra 11. Unsere Sicherheit ist ihr Job.“ – With these words began on March 12, 1996 a piece of German television history on RTL. With sales in more than 120 countries, “Alarm für Cobra 11” is the undisputed number one among serial exports.
- 307 episodes
- 25 years Cobra11
- 8 partners for Erdogan Atalay: Johannes Brandrup (as “Frank Stolte”), Mark Keller (as “André Fux”), René Steinke (as “Tom Kranich”), Christian Oliver (as “Jan Richter”), Gedeon Burkhard (as “Chris Ritter”), Tom Beck (as “Ben Jäger”), Vinzenz Kiefer (as “Alex Brandt”) and since 2016 Daniel Roesner as “Paul Renner”
- 7 “Taurus World Stunt Awards” for the Cobra, action concept, the production company, won the Action Oscar 9 times
- over 5,000 scrapped vehicles
- over 1,000 gangsters arrested
- 4 days of preparation for EVERY stunt
- 4 weeks of preparation for each episode
- 100 people need 10 hours to produce 1 hour of film material, at the end of which 2-3 minutes of film are cut together
- around 400 worn tires for tests and shoots per season
- around 30 tons of steel are used for special constructions per season
- Approx. 100 employees on set are required for each action shoot
- up to 16 cameras capture a stunt scene from every imaginable perspective
- an average of 16 episodes are produced each year
- more than 300 suggestions are examined by authors for this purpose
- up to 1 year in advance from the idea to the finished script
- The Cobra is celebrating successes in over 120 countries, including: Hungary, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia, Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania, Turkey, Poland, Spain, Italy and even in Mexico, Russia and China, Japan, South Korea
- The most valuable “guest star” on four wheels – a Fulda Exelero, the sports version of the Maybach 57 – cost 9 million euros
Fun facts worth knowing about 25 years Cobra11
- more than 50 directors have worked for the “Alarm für Cobra 11” so far
- 49,200 hours were shot up to the 300th episode. That is 2050 days or 5.6 years of continuous shooting
- Cologne and Düsseldorf were the most frequent locations
- approx. 12,400 extras ran through the picture since the first episode.
- over 700 actors stood in front of the camera for the series
- almost 1 million (approx. 924,855) meals were distributed to the employees of the production company action concept and the extras
- According to Olli, the head of catering, the favorite meals on the set are generally “fish” and “spagetti bolognese”
- In the episode “72 Hours of Fear”, Ben and Semir raced down the track with KITT, known worldwide from the cult series “Knight Rider”
- So that the stunts can be safely planned from start to finish, the stunt team is supported by a physicist, a mathematician and two engineers
- The film is shot with the digital camera “Alexa”, which enables brilliant recordings in HD quality
- Producer Hermann Joha is himself a stunt specialist and professional helicopter pilot
- Since November 2005, the complex driving scenes and crashes of “Cobra 11” have been filmed on a special motorway. Europe’s largest film set, the film and test location, is located in the Düren / North Rhine-Westphalia district and enables extraordinary settings and excellent stunts
- The police highway station is actually the headquarters of the production company. So it can happen that the employees of action concept have to vacate their offices at short notice for the shooting
- Jackie Chan had to admit defeat to action concept’s competition with “Police Story 2” in the “Best Action in a Foreign Film” category at the “Taurus World Stunt Awards” in 2005
- Filming for the Cobra is not only taking place in Germany: it has already been shot in the USA, Belgium, Spain, the Netherlands, Austria, Turkey and Albania
25 years and more then 300 episodes. Few productions on German television are as long-lived as “Alarm für Cobra 11 – Die Autobahnpolizei”. More than 5000 cars have since been wrecked. And that was not always without pain for the car lover. Be it a beetle rolling sideways or a mini flying through the air, sometimes the stunts ended anything but mild, even for beautiful cars. There are also around 400 tires that die when shooting every episode.
The crew prepares for a stunt for four days, four weeks of preparation are in one episode. A physicist, a mathematician and two engineers are on hand to advise the team. The motorway scenes are filmed on a film motorway near Aachen. The makers use 30 tons of steel per episode for special constructions such as ramps or ski jumps.
Three episodes are considered particularly spectacular: For “Stadt in Angst” 400 kilograms of chalk mixed with peat, 250 liters of gasoline, 25 kilograms of explosives and 14 cars were blown up to simulate the explosion of a gas pipeline under the motorway. In order to land the replica of a Eurofighter on the autobahn in “supersonic” mode, four low-loaders were required. And about the fast-paced action in “Angel of Death”, Ralf Moeller said that in terms of effort, the shooting could definitely keep up with those in Hollywood.