One Emmerdale character will die and others have their lives changed forever in the most colossal stunt filmed by a UK soap since lockdown.
Jimmy King, played by actor Nick Miles, 58, will lose control of his vehicle which then careens off the road at speed before ploughing into farm buildings.
The smash triggers a series of explosive events which will eventually lead to the untimely death of at least one character, a show source said.
An ITV crew spent months plotting how to pull off the scenes – the most ambitious shot by a soap under anti-Covid rules.
The explosive action – which airs next week – was done using a combination of live car stunts and green screen technology.
Producer Laura Shaw told the Daily Star it is the dramatic conclusion to the build-up of the wedding between son-beating bad boy Paul Ashdale – actor Reece Dinsdale, 61 – and Mandy Dingle, played by Lisa Riley, 44.
"For months now we've been waiting for the appalling, horrible truth about Paul to be exposed and of course we always knew that we would want that truth to come out in a hugely dramatic and explosive way," she said.
"Shooting a colossal stunt with social distancing is no easy task and it took months of meticulous planning and the whole Emmerdale team, proudly pulling together, to enable us to successfully achieve what are undoubtedly our most ambitious and spectacular episodes of the last year.
"It's a highly charged, emotional, nail-biting, holding-your-breath week of Emmerdale that promises to leave devastation in its wake and irrevocably change the lives of some of our most loved villagers."
The car crash was filmed for real on the outskirts of Leeds where the soap is shot. Green screen filming techniques were also adopted to ensure the cast and crew stayed safe and the drama complied with social distancing guidelines.
Director Dave Beauchamp said: "We couldn’t have the real actors close for safety reasons so we used a mixture of stunt doubles and green screenshots to make you think the actors were in real jeopardy.
"I’m extremely pleased and relieved. "It does look spectacular and I am so happy for everyone involved.
"This would have been a big challenge in normal times but to be able to achieve this with all the Covid protocols in place is amazing.
"There was a lot of planning and hard work involved and I think that comes across on screen.
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"The great thing about working on Emmerdale is everyone there is so committed to making the show as good as possible.
"I knew I had to make it look and feel special. Every job I do I try to do this but this felt an especially big challenge with a lot of people wanting it to be something to be proud of."
Emmerdale airs on weekdays at 7pm on ITV, with an extra helping on Thursdays at 8pm.
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