Skip to main content

Watch this FPV drone video open Stephen Colbert’s Late Show

Stephen Colbert’s Late Show welcomed back its first live audience in 15 months this week, marking the occasion with a snazzy opening sequence shot by a drone at New York City’s Ed Sullivan Theater where the show is recorded.

Footage created using first-person-view (FPV) setups in which the drone operator uses a real-time video feed delivered to a headset has been gaining in popularity, with mainstream broadcasters and even Hollywood getting interested in hiring the best pilots. Such drone kits usually use specially built flying machines that are faster and more versatile than regular consumer drones.

Related Videos

Late Show senior producer Jake Plunkett and art director Andro Buneta came up with the main plan for the fly-through before handling responsibility for the shoot to New York-based CineRigs.

“The biggest obstacle we faced was getting everything we wanted into a 30-to-40-second box,” Plunkett told Variety, which got an advanced look at the new opening sequence.

The final piece is an impressive bit of work, with the camera starting off outside the theater before swooping down through the doors and into the audience-packed studio. The drone then zips off to take us behind the scenes of the show, performing plenty of challenging moves as it goes. The sequence ends with a shot of Colbert arriving on stage, cheered by the first live audience to attend the show in 15 months due to the pandemic.

While the Late Show’s drone video is designed to look like a single take, watch carefully and you’ll spot several moments where the footage was likely edited. Still, that doesn’t take anything away from the impressive fly-through, which matches perfectly with the band’s intro music and Jen Spyra’s enthusiastically delivered voiceover.

FPV drone videos have been getting a lot of attention lately, with pilots’ skillful handling of the camera-equipped quadcopters producing some extraordinary results. Take this truly astonishing effort showing a fly-through of a bowling alley in Minneapolis, or this brilliant tour of a soccer stadium in England.

Impressed? Then your jaw may well hit the floor if you watch these equally amazing FPV drone videos shot by pilots clearly at the top of their game.

Editors' Recommendations

Watch this mind-blowing footage of an FPV drone at a bowling alley
fpv drone bowling alley

Right Up Our Alley

If you thought you were getting good with your drone by flying it through an open window without crashing, then check out the remarkable footage (above) captured by filmmaker and expert drone pilot Jay Christensen of Minnesota-based Rally Studios.

Read more
Watch the new DJI FPV drone whiz between trees (until it doesn’t)
djis new fpv drone takes on trees and the won dji test flight

DJI recently launched its first FPV drone, a machine that can zip from zero to 60 mph in a mere two seconds before hurtling to a top speed of 87 mph.

Drone pilots across the experience spectrum have already been posting their first flights online, with some clearly more daring than others when it comes to taking on tricky obstacles.

Read more
DJI FPV drone accelerates faster than a Tesla Model S. Yeah, it’s that quick
DJI FPV drone

Talk about leaving the competition behind! DJI’s latest drone is its fastest flying consumer drone to date, easily capable of beating the Tesla Model S on paper when it comes to acceleration. The DJI FPV has a max acceleration of 0 to 62mph in two seconds. Let that sink in for a moment. It’s a drone that accelerates faster than a car! That alone might be enough for you to buy one, but there’s still plenty more for content creators to salivate over because this new drone opens up exploration opportunities for seasoned pilots who want to expand their aerial videography.

FPV drones in general are fast and furious, often reaching incredible speeds and acceleration levels to keep up with moving subjects. The DJI FPV blends finesse and performance into one package that includes the FPV Goggles V2, remote controller 2, the drone itself, and the never-before-seen Motion Controller. This isn’t particularly targeted for beginners, since flying an FPV drone is a very different experience from past DJI consumer drones, like the Mini 2 and Mavic Air 2

Read more