May 20th my good friend DJ Roller from Liquid Pictures called me about an under water 3D iMAX movie he is shooting in the Bahamas.  His film team had just returned from South Africa where they were shooting great white sharks for their film "The Last Reef".  They were moving their production to Bimini (Bahamas) so they could shoot lemon sharks and dolphin out in the sand and grass flats off of the coast. 

DJ has the only 3D RED underwater camera in the world, its an amazing piece of technology and rather large in its custom made under water housing. 

  DJ called me about building a lifting rig/hoist to help lift his 550lb camera off the back of the boat and into the water.  We are using 60'+ Hatteras that had a rear deck of 10'x12' and approx 5' off of the water.   This may not seem like a hard quest but, this equipment has to be rented in the USA, traveled into the Bahamas, and has to work 100% RIGHT on the first try.  We are on the small island of Bimini.  There are NO hardware stores, NO lumber stores, NO "ooooooooooops I need that" stores.   I took the boat dimensions, drew it out, and between 2 rental houses here in Atlanta and Ft Lauderdale I got the gear.

We flew over in 3 cargo planes, the camera and rig weighed almost 4,000lbs.

Day#1 was spent traveling into the Bahamas, clearing customs, and transporting all the gear to the docks and rooms where we were staying.

Day#2 I built my masterpiece,.  all 1,500lbs of lifting rig.. 12inch box truss, 10inch iBeam, speed rail, lumber + lumber, and enough straps to keep this thing from falling into the water while we were out at sea.

Mostly built of 12" BOX truss from ROC-OFF in Ft Lauderdale and a 10" iBeam from Atlanta Rigging Systems, it all worked out perfect. 

Day#3 we went out to sea for the first time and had the camera launch down to 5 minutes...  We would spot dolphin and could launch the camera in the same amount of time it would take to get our scuba gear on.

We spent 7 days chasing sharks and dolphin in the Bahamas.  DJ and his team left here and went to the South Pacific to finish filming.  The iMax movie should be out shortly and something awesome to see.

The Liquid Pictures Team and myself: 

DJ Roller DP, Craig Waller KeyGrip, Vance Wiese AC, Mark Carroll AC


DJ Roller / Liquid Pictures

DJ Roller IMDB

The iMAX movie "The Last Reef"