Game of Thrones: GPS flies with dragons

Movie makers were some of the early adopters of drone technology. Today, the movie industry continues to push the limits of UAV capabilities to get the best shot of the action. Both Game of Thrones and Mission Impossible 6 wanted to show “never before seen on TV” graphical effects while guaranteeing safety on the set. The only possible solution to achieve this: an Oscar winning unmanned helicopter made by a company called Flying-Cam, equipped with top-of-the line filming and GPS technology.

April 14, 2019 Game of Thrones launched its 8th and final season. In a series that HBO calls “the most popular show on TV” with a budget of $15 million dollars per episode, no expense is spared to create the most breath-taking images ever seen on TV. Season 7’s episode 4 won the show 2 Visual Effects Society Awards with its “Loot Train Attack” scene, combining the latest in visual effects technology with cutting edge cinematography techniques. In this scene Daenerys Targaryen takes matters into her own hands and flies atop her fire-breathing Dragon, leading her wild Dothraki cavalry against the Lanister army.

“We needed to sell speed. And we needed to shoot elaborate dragon’s points of view.” Said Matt Shakman, film director. Below is a list of challenges that Matt was faced with to make his dream-scene happen.

- Flying the camera high enough to provide a wide-angle downward shot of the huge dragon who is flying 30 m (98 ft) up in the air over the battle scene, breathing out a column of fire 10 m (33 ft) wide.
- Flying the camera at a speed of 100 km/h (62 mph) over several kilometers to show the speed of the flying dragon.
- To guarantee the safety of people on the set below, the flying camera needs to follow a precise route at full speed.

The answer: An unmanned helicopter engineered by a company called Flying-Cam, who have been pioneering top-performance UAV technology since 1986. Two times Oscar winner and one time Emmy award winner, this helicopter could follow a precise flight-path while filming from above with a top-quality gimbal camera. Here are some of the specs of this unique UAV.