Behind The Scenes: Filming a Plane Crash

I have mad respect for Swedish independent film outfit Crazy Pictures for their big-budget cinematography skills that are being utilized on a moderately small budget with rigs and labor that are within reach of almost any videographer. They've put together an incredibly informative behind-the-scenes video that covers in detail the massive amount of work that goes into such a short segment of film.

In this video they show us how they film a plane crash, one that certainly rivals the best I've ever seen from any major Hollywood studio. They begin with the actors and shooting everything that is real; pretty straightforward until they get into the awesome CGI that is actually based around practical effects.

What we've done now, after filming the background, is a simple 3D sketch of how we want the plane to be traveling, its speed and trajectory, how it's going to hit the ground and run into the truck. We want to hit so the back of the truck explodes everywhere.

The footage they've assembled to show how it's all done is an absolute treat. After the basic sketches, they build real-world models to decide how to handle the physics of the plane hitting a truck. But they don't stop there. They actually construct a gigantic "green screen box" and film the model plane crashing as the basis of their graphics postproduction.

While the entire process is exceptionally impressive, I was really blown away by the rain and their desire to avoid CGI where possible:

We decided to film real rain, instead of doing it digitally. We sprayed a hose into the air and backlit the water droplets so they stood out against the black background. This way we could isolate the rain and use it in our scene.

Yep, instead of waiting for it to actually rain or inserting digital rain, they filmed homemade rain by itself and then inserted that into the movie.

This video is 12 minutes of awesome so grab a snack, enjoy, and be sure to stick around to see the final product at the end.

Sean Molin's picture

Sean Molin is an award-winning photographer out of Indianapolis who specializes in weddings, portraits, travel, and live music photography. He has had work featured in galleries and in magazines ranging from Popular Photography to Rolling Stone.

Coming from web development and IT, he's as much a geek for the gear as he is for taking photos.

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wonderful work, great behind the scenes clip and the result looks awesome, well done guys !

Mad respect good job guys.Bts amazing amazing. Wow and incredible bts. It's like a Swedish Film Riot!

This is EXACTLY what independent movie making is about. Learning as you go, improvising, and practical special effects. I feel like too many of today's "film makers" get caught-up in droning and using sliders while completely forgetting to actually tell a story.

Wow, that was impressive.

Have Fun,

This is a Kickstarter project. So go support them so that they can make a awesome movie, and more production diaries! :)

Great work ! Imagination, creativity, research and study. They put all to work in this wonderful sequence !