The two big video revolutions of the last five years have been the rise of the DSLR (Canon 5D Mark ii and company) and the boom in hands-free cameras (GoPro, et.al.). Unless phone cameras start getting seriously good, for my money the next one will be the use of radio-controlled helicopters to capture previously impossible or unaffordable shots.
Take, for example, this Mammut expedition to Trango Towers in Pakistan. The crew went a little overboard with the RC heli shots – EVERY segment is from the mini chopper – but it’s hard to blame them when you can get such stunning angles. Every one gives you a new perspective, and the constant motion makes the short film that much more dynamic. The cost of an entire RC setup is less than the tab
to simply to fire up an A-Star, no lives are at risk, and you can be much less obtrusive (check out the shots of village). They aren’t easy to operate expertly (it’s nerve-wracking if that’s your 5D hanging out there), but as more action sports production companies make the leap, it’s inevitable that we’ll see waves of RC ninjas and even more jaw-dropping cinematography.