Monday, March 27th saw us at Saunton Sands in North Devon. We were there to quite literally shoot one of the most important scenes in the film – The moment Brendan is fately shot by a one in a million bullet.

On 15 July 1942, Wg Cdr Brendan Finucane led a “Ramrod”—ground attack, targeting a German Army camp at Étaples, France. It was the largest operation of it’s kind. During the raid, his Spitfire was damaged by ground-fire. Deciding to risk flying back to England, rather than have to face possible capture, he was forced to ditch his ailing Spitfire into the sea and subsequently vanished somewhere in the English Channel. 

Despite raining the day before, it was nothing but blue skies on the Monday – perfect weather for the shoot.

Working with us on the day was drone pilot, Phil Atkinson. Phil captured some great Spitfire P.O.V shots.

Above: Directors Ian and Dominic Higgins with Drone pilot Phil Atkinson

Having actors and live pyrotechnics is always going to provide challenges, but the biggest challenge of the day, was coordinating the pyrotechnics with the drone to get the shot we wanted and it made for a long day.

The weather kept on side the following week when we were filming at the Tiger Moth Training School at Henstridge Airfield on the beautiful Somerset Dorset border.

We were met by instructor Clive Davidson who introduced us to their immaculately restored, historic Tiger Moth planes. With engineer Annabelle Burroughes on hand we captured some great shots of a Tiger Moth in flight.

On the drama front, joining the cast, along with Shane O’Regan for this shoot, was Jack Lane, who we last worked with on 7 Days – The Story of Blind Dave Heeley.

The scene we were filming required an actor experienced in comedy delivery, so we knew Jack was our man and he certainly delivered!

Above: Cast and crew with instructor Clive (far right) and Tiger Moth plane.

Clive and Annabelle were so incredibly helpful on the day, so a huge thank you goes out to them both.

Also, on site was photographer Neil Randell who took some great shots of us at work. A few of his photos are included below.

The shoot also marked the last scene to be filmed with Shane. With the end of the filming now in sight, all we had left to film was one last scene, but it was going to be one of the biggest scenes we had to film in terms of extras…

Above: Shane O’Regan wraps on the set of the Shamrock Spitfire