A starting point...
Paul WS Anderson's Death Race remake began with the demise of racing champ Frankenstein played (vocally at least) by original Death Race 2000 star Keith Carradine.
The Death Race has become the most popular television event on the planet, and it's a handy way of dealing with the overcrowded prison system.
After the original Frankenstein dies in the opening, ex-racer and wrongly-accused convict Ames (Jason Statham) is persuaded to don the mask for an opportunity to win a pardon.
Death Race 2 is released on DVD and Blu-ray on 27 December, and the prequel tells the story of how the original Frankenstein came to be.
Read on to find out the key ingredients that go into making a Death Race...
Luke Goss plays Carl 'Luke' Lucas, the man who goes on to become Frankenstein.
Writer and producer Paul WS Anderson has said: "We thought it would be fun to go back and actually show the audience the creation of the Death Race."
"So the movie deals with the creation of the original Frankenstein which is the guy seen dying right at the start of the first movie. And we tell his story, how he started, how he became involved in the Death Race, and how he became horrendously disfigured."
Before he becomes a world famous Death Racer, Luke started out as a bank robber.
He finds himself banged up in a particularly unpleasant prison, where the officials decide to harness the inmates' anger for profit.
Goss (of Blade 2 and Hellboy 2 fame) is replacing Statham in the bald action hero quotient of the movie, and as well as putting the pedal to the metal, he also has to use his fists to survive.
A line-up of villains
The Death Race has its fair share of villains. Most of the protagonists are technically criminals since they've ended up in chokey, but the wardens are even worse.
Sean Bean is lending his Northern gravitas to the role of Marcus Kane.
Kane is instrumental in setting up the Death Race, and before long he's baying for the star driver's blood, even attempting to bribe his ladyfriend with the promise of freedom
Lauren Cohan ( The Vampire Diaries ' Rose) is also on board as September Jones, a ruthless TV producer who's looking for a hit, and senses the potential of the prisoner-populated Grand Prix.
The prequel gets another shot of muscular villainy in the form of Ving Rhames. He plays prisoner owner Weyland, a man who senses the money-making opportunity in the event launch.
Statham would've never survived the first movie if it wasn't for his trusty crew, including Ian McShane and sexy navigator Natalie Martinez.
Luke Goss gets a helping hand from Machete star Danny Trejo, who brings some exploitation grime to this prequel as a top penitentiary mechanic.
He may be 66 years old, but he cuts a mean figure, and he's not bothered about showing of his tattooed torso.
Trejo claims this has the essential ingredients ("blood, broads, bullets") that go into making a great movie. He told us: "I play a Mexican-Jew. He's a killer... but he's also a great mechanic."
South African supermodel turned actress Tanit Phoenix is stepping up to play busty female ally Katrina Banks (is Luke going to be able to keep his eyes on the road?), and Frederick Koehler is also assisting as crew-member Lists.
With Paul WS Anderson focusing on his 3D reboot of The Three Musketeers , he's producing this entry while Dutch filmmaker Roel Reine jumps into the director's chair.
Reine has admitted he loves 80s action movies, and cites the rawness of movies like Mad Max as an influence.
It's Reine's intention to have minimal CGI-trickery on the film, and instead focus on the crunching physicality of the souped-up motors.
Death Race 2 comes from a script from Tony Giglio, which is based on a story by Anderson.
Death Race 2 was filmed in Cape Town, South Africa.
Thanks to the opportunity of tax breaks and the variety of exotic that are on offer, South Africa is becoming a prominent filmmaking destination.
An abandoned cement factory provides the weathered, dusty location for the prison-set action.
Like the first movie, much of the action takes place outside during the daytime, so there's nowhere for the FX team to hide.
The stunts take place under the unrelenting African sun, which also heats things up in the prison-set sequences.
Some bad-ass cars
You couldn't have a Death Race movie without some souped-up, four-wheeled beasts, and star Danny Trejo has admitted that he's in "awe" of the cars on set.
To maintain continuity in the franchise, the team behind Part II have rebuilt three of the vehicles from the first movie from scratch.
A Porsche, a Chrysler and a Mustang were torn apart by the production, only to be rebuilt as the monsters you see on screen.
Putting the cars together and running them became a production nightmare, but director Reine is confident that it's worth it when it comes to the results that you see on screen.
Goss is stoked, telling us: "I'm driving a 650-horsepower Shelby Mustang."
"All the ABS and traction control taken out, no visibility out of the windows - the producers have a fit every time I get in it."
Yeah, the four-wheeled machines are the big draw, but it doesn't mean anything if there's nothing to hang it on.
Goss, for one, is confident that there's a decent story to tell here.
The star told us: "I read the script and said, 'I think we've got a better movie here."
"Yeah, there's driving and fighting, but there's drama, too. It's character dependent."
Sean Bean has also extolled the virtue of the film's script, claiming it's about the dynamics of power as much as it's about burning rubber.
So, will this be an action movie with brains? You can find out when it hits DVD and Blu-ray on 27 December.