Last March in Toronto, we were happy to supply the drone aerial video services for the Minority Report television series pilot episode.
20th Century Fox chose the city of Toronto for the filming of the new TV series pilot, but the show has since then moved to Vancouver. The story is set in 2065, 11 years after the original film’s storyline, and after the abolishment of the PreCrime program. The show goes on to follow the story of the 3 ‘Precogs’, whom are now adults.
The pilot needed to make use of SkyMotion Video’s aerial video drone systems for two of the episode’s scenes.
There is of course always a lot to consider when conducting aerial drone filming within downtown Toronto. As we explain on our regulations page, Transport Canada requires a 100 ft safety perimeter between the drone and the general public. This can sometimes mean road closures, and the help of many location production assistants to ensure that the safety perimeter remains in place while the drone is flying. Along with this is a fair amount of communication with NAV Canada and any nearby aerodomes.
Toronto drone regulations aside, both scenes were good examples of when and where an aerial video drone is the ideal tool. In the first scene, the camera needed to give the impression that we are flying along with a group of pigeons. In this example, a manned helicopter would not be able to get as close to the subject matter, and even a large crane would not deliver the same travel distance for the bird flight. Due to the very nature of low-altitude aerial cinematography through the use drones, this was the perfect tool to simulate the flight of a bird.
The second scene was located in a narrow back alley, where the hero is in pursuit of the villain down a set of emergency fire stairs. The downtown Toronto alley where the filming took place was simply too narrow for a large camera crane to drive in, and due to the nature of the scene, a camera movement was important to convey a sense of danger. As a result, SkyMotion Video’s aerial video drone was a perfect solution for the limited space of the alley.
Below are some clips of the drone video shots which were included in the final edit of the Minority Report pilot.
We were happy to hear that Minority Report was picked up from this pilot and their first episode aired on September 21st, 2015. We wish the new Vancouver crew of the series the best of luck!