Filming Tips: How Filmmakers Bag Those Unbelievable Aerial Shots

We’ve all seen a blockbuster movie or two in our time. However, have you ever wondered how the filmmakers behind these big productions get hold of some of those incredible aerial shots? I know we have! So, naturally, we did a bit of research and have the answers for you. Check out the techniques that the film industry is using below!
Yes, that’s right. Helicopters are flown up into the air to grab some of the best aerial shots available. Companies such as Helivision are specialists at capturing these sorts of images. They’ve grabbed aerial shots for Homeland, Top Gear, and even The Hunger Games. So, if you’ve ever seen any of those productions, then you know exactly the sort of jaw-dropping shots we’re talking about! Cameras are attached to the outside of helicopters, a special stabilizer technologies are used to keep the shot steady. Aerial film production work isn’t cheaper, however, and it costs a fair whack to get these sort of shots as part of your movie or TV show. That said, it must be worth it! You can literally fly anywhere in a helicopter – imagine some of the images that you’d be able to capture!
Heard of drones? They’re fast dropping in price and becoming more accessible to semi-pro and even amateur filmmakers. However, these are often what the blockbuster movies are using to capture some of the awesome shots you see on TV. You can get hold of a good one for around $1,000, which isn’t too bad considering the quality of filmmaking that you can do with them. Some even come equipped with 4K cameras, which is the kind of pixel density that you’ll see on cinema screens worldwide. Drones are controlled by a remote controller that you need to be within a certain distance of the drone to operate. That said, that length is fairly substantial, so you can really fly your drone up high and far away from you to get some great shots. There are other cool modes that some drones have where they can track you. This is used in car chase scenes in the film industry. The driver of the car will have the remote controller sat in there with them. Then, the drone will automatically follow the route of the car, making for an awesome, automated shot. How effortless!
Sometimes, there is no equipment behind those unbelievable aerial shots other than simple CGI. The industry has been utilizing CGI technologies for decades now in their attempts to create some of the most amazing visuals on screen. Often actors will be in front of a green screen with a fan blowing away against them to make it look like they’re mid-air. This is typical of the sort of scenes where somebody is jumping out of a plane or flying through space. So, it’s cool to know how they’re shot, isn’t it!
Hopefully, you’ve enjoyed this sneak peek at how filmmakers bag some of their most unbelievable aerial shots. We certainly enjoyed uncovering the truth and the tricks behind it all. Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.


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