This new first-person view (FPV) drone video goes above and beyond previous takes on the style by flying over the Florida Gators college football team as they take the field — live and unscripted.
FPV drone flythroughs have become incredibly popular ever since Jay Christensen of Jay Byrd Films took the internet by storm with his wildly popular bowling alley drone video. Since then, not only has Christensen tackled ever more complicated projects, the style has been mimicked by pilots around the world to showcase soccer stadiums, featured in HBO’s Hard Knocks, used to show off Tesla’s German-based production facility, featured in weddings, and more. DJI even used the style to show off its gigantic new China offices.
That said, the common denominator of all these films is that while they are all usually done in one take — or are edited to appear as such — they are carefully scripted. As the progenitor of the style, it should come as no surprise then that Christensen has taken it to the next level by using the style to document a college football team taking to the field live, unscripted, and without any chance of a do-over should something go wrong.
Spotted by DPReview, the video is deceptive in its simplicity, because pulling off this video may have been harder than any of the projects he has done in the past even though it is considerably shorter.
In the behind-the-scenes video Christensen posted on his Instagram, he explains why it was challenging: he only got one shot at it. Even though he was able to test out his route ahead of time, the shot would take place at the same time the game would be broadcast on ESPN and in real-time, so there were no do-overs.
Everyone from the players to the coach to the broadcast team were aware of what he was doing, which was his only advantage. The players treated their entrance onto the field like they would with or without Christensen there, which further adds to the authenticity of the final product.
Just like his previous videos, the final film called “The Swamp” includes carefully treated audio which removes the buzz of his drone and replaces it with clips that make viewers feel as though they are the ones flying over the team. That mix of FPV and clever audio work is one of the reasons his videos are so successful, and that continues to be the case here.
Christensen and his Jay Byrd Films company seem to have a deal with ESPN, as he recently uploaded another flythrough video that features ESPN College Gameday in Montana, although this one returns to a more staged flythrough approach: