Filmmakers Create Incredible ‘Shaky Effect’ By Attaching a Drill to Camera

drill attached camera saving private ryan steven spielberg

Filmmakers created an incredible “shaky effect” on a video by attaching a drill to a camera — after being inspired by Steven Spielberg’s Saving Private Ryan.

The filmmakers behind Moonshine Film revealed how they attached a drill to a camera to replicate the intense vibrations experienced by a racing driver for a shoot for Envision Racings brand-new Formula E car.

@moonshinefilm This is how we created a shakey effect using a drill attached to the Arri Super 35 Camera – PART 1 Follow & Like for PART 2🔥🔥#cinematography #film #tv #arri ♬ original sound – Moonshine Film

In a viral TikTok video, that has amassed over 2.5 million views, U.K.-based company Moonshine Film share the behind-the-scenes footage from the shoot and how they created the vibrating visual effect in the video.

@moonshinefilm Replying to @James Short Final result from the previous tiktok! Find the full video on Envision Racing youtube channel #cinematography #film #tv #arri ♬ original sound – Moonshine Film

In the clip, Aran Lamond, the director of photography at Moonshine Film, is seen turning on a drill that is strapped onto an Arri Super 35 camera to film Envision Racing’s new car for Formula E — which is the motorsport championship for electric cars.

The filmmakers were inspired to attach a drill to their camera after hearing how director Spielberg tested the technique for the 1998 film Saving Private Ryan.

According to the filmmakers at Moonshine Film, it was relatively straightforward to fix the drill to the Arri Super 35 camera for the shoot.

They also used huge LED screens behind the Formula E car to mimic a street passing through and create a real-time effect in the video.

“The idea came from our DOP Aran Lamond who wanted to replicate this technique used by Steven Spielberg in Saving Private Ryan,” Kosta, the 1st AC (Assistant Camera) at Moonshine Films, tells PetaPixel.

“Strapping the drill to the camera was fairly easy and simple.

“I took off the handle from the moose bars and had two K-clamps attached to each other, one being on the moose bar and the other on the drill.”

The Shaky Camera in ‘Saving Private Ryan’

Spielberg’s Saving Private Ryan follows a group of soldiers during World War II in France in 1994. The 25-minute dramatization of World War II’s D-Day invasion that opens the movie is often praised as one of the most realistic battle scenes ever depicted in cinema.

Spielberg wanted to replicate the shaky feel of photographer Robert Capa’s images of the D-Day invasion for Saving Private Ryan which had a vibrating visual effect caused by the real-life explosive conditions during the invasion.

Spielberg tested attaching a Black & Decker drill to the camera when filming the battle scenes in Saving Private Ryan, which he said worked perfectly.

However, the director eventually found another lens which had the same effect and which was easier to use.

“Beyond the whole film shot handheld, I also wanted the camera to vibrate, with the image shaking to closely match the Robert Capa photographs of Omaha Beach that morning.” Spielberg told the Directors Guild of America in a 2011 interview.

“To capture that chaos, I tested a Black & Decker drill taped to a Panaflex camera so the image would vibrate whenever I turned on the drill.

“It worked great, but thankfully we found a lens called the Image Shaker that did the same thing as my Black & Decker, only without having someone with a 90-yard extension cord running behind the camera.”

More information about Moonshine Film can be found on Instagram, TikTok, or website.

Image credits: All photos by TikTok/Moonshine Film.