WASHINGTON at war – passersby came to a standstill when a tank rolled into town.
A troop of stern-looking North Korean soldiers marched through Washington Village leading an army tank and missile.
Thankfully, the town is not being invaded, the soldiers were actors promoting Red Dawn, a remake of the Patrick Swayze film, which is released tomorrow.
Georgie Rennie, publicist from Koch Media, said: “In the film, a city in Washington state in America is invaded by North Korea.
“We wanted to recreate that but have a bit of fun with it.
“The first thing that sprung to mind was coming to Washington, Tyne and Wear. We didn’t tell anyone we were here as we wanted it to have an element of surprise.”
The film stars Chris Hemsworth from Avengers Assemble, Josh Hutcherson from The Hunger Games and Isabel Lucas from Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen.
Georgie added: “It’s a very fast-paced film with lots of action and lots of explosions.”
The footage taken at yesterday’s stunt will be used to publicise the film nationwide.
A remake of the 1984 cult classic starring Swayze and Charlie Sheen, Red Dawn sees characters awakening to the surreal sight of North Korean paratroopers dropping from the sky.
Quickly and without warning, the citizens find themselves prisoners and their town under enemy occupation.
Determined to fight back, a group of young patriots seek refuge in the surrounding woods, training and reorganising themselves into a guerilla group of fighters. Taking inspiration from their high school mascot, they call themselves the “Wolverines”, banding together to protect one another, liberate their town from its captors, and take back their freedom.
Reporter Katy Wheeler takes a spin
NOTE to self – never drive a tank in a pencil skirt and heels.
Thanks to my impractical outfit choice, clambering into the back of this Vickers 432 model was an obstacle course in itself as we set off on our journey.
I was given the chance to drive – well, sit behind the driver – as he charged around Washington.
At the speed of about 15 miles an hour, we headed off around Glebe and Washington Village, waving at residents who didn’t seem at all perturbed by the sight of a tank and soldiers.
The tank is a recreation of a military model and was built by Tanks-A-Lot who specialise in making roadworthy tanks.
Manoeuvring this 15-tonne metal beast looked a lot more difficult than the controls on my Clio. Thankfully though, despite my pleas, I wasn’t allowed to operate it myself – Washington can sleep easy tonight.