Disney+'s ‘America the Beautiful’ uses ‘Top Gun’ Style Camera Techniques

(Image credit: Disney+)

As “Top Gun Maverick” dazzles audiences worldwide this summer, with its advanced camera work displaying dizzying hypersonic flying visuals, a new Disney+ series launching on July 4, adopts many of these techniques to give viewers enhanced angles and viewpoints of America’s natural highlights.

The six-episode series “America the Beautiful,” which was produced by the same people who brought us “Planet Earth” and “Frozen Planet” uses the same aerial  system [mounted] on the front of the jet that was used on “Top Gun Maverick,” making it possibly the first nature series to use cinema-grade cameras on fighter jets for documentary filming.

In addition to scenic panoramic views, the camera-outfitted jet also helps overcome the challenges of shooting weather events. 

"A very important part of doing a wildlife series about North America is capturing the weather itself in a new way,” filmmaker Mark Linfield told MediaVillage in an exclusive interview. “The jet allows you to reach the weather quickly—and to get out quickly when the wild weather turns nasty."

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Tom Butts

Tom has covered the broadcast technology market for the past 25 years, including three years handling member communications for the National Association of Broadcasters followed by a year as editor of Video Technology News and DTV Business executive newsletters for Phillips Publishing. In 1999 he launched digitalbroadcasting.com for internet B2B portal Verticalnet. He is also a charter member of the CTA's Academy of Digital TV Pioneers. Since 2001, he has been editor-in-chief of TV Tech (www.tvtech.com), the leading source of news and information on broadcast and related media technology and is a frequent contributor and moderator to the brand’s Tech Leadership events.