FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — At the end of the 1991 movie “Thelma & Louise,” the two leading ladies – fugitives cornered by authorities in the Grand Canyon – decide against surrendering and instead drive off a cliff.

One of cinema’s most iconic endings wasn’t filmed in the national park in Arizona, but not for lack of trying.

“We didn’t want to encourage people coming into the canyon doing what was done in the movie, so we declined it,” said Maureen Oltrogge, a longtime spokeswoman for the national park who retired in 2014.

Nevertheless, Oltrogge said at least two people took their own lives by driving over the rim of the Grand Canyon after the movie was released, thinking it was filmed there.

The landscape in and around one of the world’s seven natural wonders has a long history of stunts being staged – or turned down. An acrobat, a magician and overall daredevils are among those who have approached Grand Canyon National Park over the years with visions of a made-for-TV moment.

The latest planned feat comes Tuesday, when actor Will Smith celebrates his 50th birthday by bungee jumping from a helicopter. While it’s been billed as a leap “in the heart of the Grand Canyon,” it actually will take place over a smaller gorge on the Navajo Nation, a tribe whose reservation borders the east rim of the national park.

Getting permission to film or stage something in the Grand Canyon means meeting a lot of criteria. Among the outrageous proposals the park has declined was in the 1990s, when now-deceased artist Ron Nicolino collected thousands of bras that he wanted to string across the Grand Canyon. The park said no.

Grand Canyon spokeswoman Kari Cobb said Smith did not approach the park for the bungee jump, but it wouldn’t be allowed, anyway. She said the park is responsible for protecting its assets.

“It’s everything relating to safety, impacts to visitors and impacts to the resources,” she said.