The Junkman is a 1982 independent film which spent two years in production. To make the film, H. B. Halicki used his own personal collection of over 200 cars, toys, and guns - including Eleanor, the star of his 1974 cult classic Gone in 60 Seconds.
The Junkman is the second installment of Halicki's film trilogy. It presents Gone in 60 Seconds and Deadline Auto Theft as films within a film. The opening car chase sequence, which involves a 1974 Bricklin SV-1, is part of Deadline Auto Theft's storyline.
Harlan B. Hollis (H. B. Halicki) struggles to stay alive when a jealous public relations manager (Christopher Stone) hires a team of assassins to kill him. The manager, also Hollis' brother-in-law, resents Hollis for making the movie Gone in 60 Seconds, which is premiering at the Cinerama Dome.
The film starts with the head hitman Frank Spyros (Sotiropulos) answering a pay phone and getting instructions from a then unknown person to go ahead with a hit on Hollis as he drives to the James Dean Festival in Cholame, California. The same unknown person inserts a video tape into a VCR, a highlight video of Hollis's life. The person ejects the video and crumples up a publicity shot of Hollis.
Later, Clark shows Hollis a picture found in the burned wreckage of one of the air covers' planes. Hollis identifies it as an unreleased publicity shot, indicating someone from inside of his own company is trying to kill him.
With the aid of the Goodyear Blimp, he travels to the Cinerama Dome, where the premiere is being held. He discovers the mystery man to be Fox, who subsequently slips off the edge of the theater roof. Clark's crew find the bomb in the limo, throw it into a parking lot, and it explodes, blowing up several cars in the process.
At the end of the film, Hollis embraces Kelly, and he begins her surprise birthday party, where he gives her a new 1982 Pontiac Trans Am for a birthday present.
Many locals were used as extras in the movie. Most of the San Luis Obispo County sheriff deputies, Paso Robles, and Atascadero police officers in the movie were officers at the time of filming. All of the California Highway Patrol officers were professional stunt drivers.
In 2001, Denice Shakarian Halicki, along with her business partner Michael Leone under the banner Halicki Films, released the restored film in 5.1 Dolby surround sound on DVD and VHS to American viewers. It included H. B. Halicki hosting a documentary about film making. The Junkman holds the Guinness World Record for wrecking over 250 cars, trucks, motorcycles and planes in one movie. In the DVD release, all of the rock and roll, country music soundtrack from the original film including title tracks have been completely replaced by a generic synthesizer music score. A number of dialogue changes were also made. The original version was released on video in the '80s but is very rare today.