Filming Flying Great White Sharks

Filming Flying Great White Sharks, by Brandon Kilbride


Howdy Folks,

African Shark Eco-Charters had the awesome opportunity of working with a film crew from the BBC for 10 days and the highlight of this was shooting Great White Sharks in 3D, Yes 3D.

The show is going to be  in 3D and will more than likely come out in the UK on the BBC 3D channel. Shooting in 3D can be very challenging so here is the insight into what goes into filming Great Whites in 3D.

First of All the Cameras you use need to be 2 of the Same camera’s and for every shot they have to be perfectly aligned, the team uses a few mathematical calculations to determine the distance between the 2 camera’s, this can make or break getting that EPIC shot of a Great White Shark breaching.

The used 2 types of Camera’s a Photron (high speed camera) shooting at up to 1500 frames per second and another camera called the RED EPIC which shoots at 100-150 frames per second. The reason for having 2 types of camera’s is that one camera is for shooting really close up and the other if for shooting really pulled back.

Now that you have an idea  what camera’s they use, here is how the shoot went and by all accounts it was probably the most successful film crew we have done for 10 days considering the amount of breaches we had.

We had 18 breaches in the 8 days that they were here, on day we recorded 7 breaches and 53 predations in a single morning of 5hours. The main focus was breaching Great Whites along with the Black Kelp Gulls that are resident to the island and feed off leftovers of a successful predation. I can truly say some of the shots that came out from the few days are amazing.

We had some great predations and we then decided to try and chase some seals and try and get a natural predation on the high speed camera, so we chased chased and then finally we managed to nail a great shot of a Great White Shark attempting a full natural breach on a Cape Fur Seal. The lucky seal escaped this time, but the shot was in the bag.

The above all sounds really exciting and it is, but it also comes with the stress. The high speed Camera that they use shoots huge files and can take up to 40 minutes to download a 1second shot. This the film crew is super tense when a shot is nailed and nobody, nobody is to go near any cables as this can jeopardize the shot and possibly loosing it.  So the crew quickly learned that when a shot is called, we were to freeze. LOL.

We were very lucky with the days at sea and only got kept off the water for 2 days due to bad weather, this is very good for this time of the year as we can get some very strong wind and rain.

Well that’s all for now, keep your eyes peeled for this documentary, its gonna be an absolute epic one.

Till next time,

Have a great day,

Brandon Kilbride

Come book with us and live the dream of seeing the great white sharks breach for yourself. It is truly a once in a life time opportunity that you will do.

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