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Atypical order of video shot by drone of the Champagne vineyard for National Geographic

The London production company WINDFALLFILMS commissioned us to produce several video shots for the French episode of the documentary EUROPE FROM ABOVE broadcast on NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC.

Overview of the Champagne vineyard by a DJI Inspire 2 drone from DCOMDRONE

"We need you to shoot absolute identical videos by drone"

To illustrate the change of season above the champagne vines, in the region of Reims - Department of Marne (51), the director was looking for identical drone video shots made in different seasons so as to assemble them in a crossfade and thus moving from autumn to winter. In an ideal scenario, this would be done by setting up a programmed flight that would be replicated throughout the year, like in this example above the tulip fields in the Netherlands.

Identically copy an existing drone plan

Executive production company WINDFALLFILMS didn't have a year ahead to produce video shots in different seasons. It therefore looked for some stockshots available on the HOsiHO drone aerial video bank. The director chose a series of shots in which the vines are covered in a blanket of snow. It is now up to us to produce the same shots in an autumnal atmosphere just after the harvest.

When the plans reached us, our only reference was the name of the town where the images had been shot the previous year. Despite the snow, a search on Google Maps very quickly allowed us to identify the overflown plots.

For each shot, we knew that the editor was going to use our "autumn" version first, then the "winter" shot with a fade effect from one shot to another. The challenge was therefore to carry out each plan in such a way as to offer a perfect match. That meant: same framing, same speed, same direction (since the shots were all in motion). And for the drone, same location and same height! Of course we groped for the start and finish positions of the drone as well as for the correct tilt of the camera but we very quickly found the original frames by referring to the A4 paper-prints that we carried with us.

Recording in Apple ProRes 422HQ, 4K Ultra HD, 25fps

Since National Geographic expected the footages in the Apple ProRes 422 HQ format, we used our DJI Inspire 2 drone which includes an image processing and a video recording process that produce video shots up to 5.2K CinemaDNG and/or Apple ProRes formats.

With the Apple ProRes format and a D-LOG color profile, editing tasks are optimized, with finer control over images in post-production.

The strength of the HOsiHO drone pilot network in the face of the lockdown

Normally we would certainly not have been contacted by this English production company. But the health constraints and the obligations for everyone to stay at home has led a good number of production companies to appeal to local filming teams or to postpone international projects until later. It is in this very special context that we had the chance to be contacted for the production of these images and thus collaborate on this prestigious production.

We warmly thank the Drone Pictures company, also a member of the HOsiHO Drone Network for the connection.


If you want to know more, do not hesitate to contact us. We will be happy to listen to you and advise you.


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