Act of Valor
"Act of Valor" premiered this week on Sunset Blvd. As you may know the film stars active duty Navy SEALs, and residents of Hollywood had themselves a momentary scare as the stars of the film parachuted down to the Red Carpet. The film was Directed by Mike McCoy and Scott Waugh and the Cinematography was accomplished by Shane Hurlbut.
While there have been tons of HDSLR films out in the wild by now (a report stated that more than 70% of the films screened at Sundance in 2010 were shot on HDSLRs) Act of Valor should occupy a special place in HDSLR history books. Mike, Scott and Shane were some of the first to jump onto the HDSLR bandwagon three years ago as they shot this film (and were forced to keep quiet about it as with any film in production – let alone one shot w/ the cooperation of the special forces) and what they pulled off is pretty spectacular.
Shane says that 75% of the film was shot on the Canon 5D MKII and the other 25% with film cameras. This makes sense as it was nearly impossible to use the 5D MKII on remote/stabilized helicopter mounts in the early days of HDSLRs for example (there was no way to control the camera let alone start/stop it.)
While I’m sure there may be a little grumbling from some folks given the nature of the film – I would recommend ALL DSLR shooters go check it out. Shane and the Bandito Brothers were generous enough to treat me to a screening of the film a little over two months ago. I went in not knowing what to expect – my main concern was that the stars were active duty Navy Seals – not actors. I was incredibly surprised at how well they came off on screen and how incredibly good the film looked on screen as well.
There is a very good chance this will become a modern "Top Gun" for the Navy. As you may know "Top Gun" led to an incredible surge in sign ups to the Navy’s fighter wing. As the Navy and US Military moves more towards covert ops – expect signups to be way up next year thanks in part to this film (not to mention the recent news in Pakistan and Somalia.)
I definitely hope you get to check the film out - It is definitely one of the more masterful uses of an HDSLR I’ve seen – and the results are even more impressive on the large silver screen.
The film is out in theaters February 24th. Head over to the film’s website to see some behind the scenes featurettes.