During its initial two-decade run, New Jersey’s infamous Action Park was the site of a slew of injuries and six confirmed deaths before closing in 1996. So, naturally, it takes a real Jackass to bring a version of the amusement park’s story to the big screen.
Enter Jackass star Johnny Knoxville, whose latest project, Action Point, takes serious inspiration from the Jersey park, according to the Asbury Park Press. As Knoxville reportedly said while announcing the film last year, Action Park intrigued him because “safety was left up to the people who walked in the park.”
“It actually existed. It was like as if us, instead of doing Jackass, decided to open a theme park,” he added.
Action Point stars Knoxville as an over-his-head amusement park owner tasked with drumming up more business when a competitor opens nearby. He settles on outrageous, and outrageously dangerous, new rides, many of which could have come straight out of the Jackass series.
“No rules, no speed limits — just pure fun,” Knoxville says of the park in the film’s trailer, which was released this week.
Jersey’s Action Park opened up in 1978, and earned a reputation for being a dangerous, if enjoyable, trip thanks to attractions like the Cannonball Loop. According to NJ.com, that ride once injured 110 people in a single summer, and was reportedly designed by park owner Eugene Mulvihill on a napkin.
Despite its apparent lack of safety, Action Park became a beloved landmark for New Jersey locals. As Weird NJ’s Chris Gethard once wrote of the park, it was something of a “true rite of passage for any New Jersey kid” because so many had “come closest to death” there.
Action Park closed in 1996 following a series of lawsuits. It was rebranded as Mountain Creek Waterpark in 2016.
Knoxville’s Action Point is scheduled for a June 1 release.