Each FlyOver film requires an incredible amount of planning and coordination to capture that perfect shot. A talented team of creatives and planners work together for months to scout locations, coordinate and plan before filming this ambitious project.
Wonders of the American West (formerly The Real Wild West), shot above Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Montana, California, Arizona, New Mexico and Utah, is no exception. It takes passengers over 22 of the United States’ most magnificent cities, monuments and landscapes to capture the essence of the country’s rugged west — from the people and the places to the history and the stories of this diverse area.
The team at FlyOver worked with the Hualapai Tribe to capture stunning footage inside the Grand Canyon, in an area known as Grand Canyon West.
The Hualapai People, which means the “People of the Tall Pines,” have inhabited this area since time immemorial, and the team at FlyOver was honored to work with them to tell their story.
“We have so much respect for, and want to tell the story of, the Indigenous people, of this part of the world, but we’re not really in a position to do that,” says Dave Mossop, director for Wonders of the American West. “So, we have to have that authored and generated by those people.”
“We wanted to work with them and include them and tell their story and let them decide how their story was told so they could be truly proud of it.”
The group introduced our team to a traditional dance they do in the Grand Canyon called the bird dance. Elders and young gather in traditional clothing to perform the dance, while a male voice sings and it echoes throughout the canyon.
“It was a really special experience to shoot inside the Grand Canyon with them,” says Mossop. “[This] is an important piece of the puzzle when it comes to telling the truth about what the Wild West is.”
Watch the video above to see how the team brought the sequence to life.