Act of Valor using Canon 5D Mark 2

Spent a couple of minutes watching the making of “Act of Valor” and as with any professional film crew, their camera equipment contains the full frame 5D Mark 2. I think that’s just another reason to get this camera or be a proud owner of one despite it being close to 4 years old. Makes me wonder how the new 5D Mark 3 will fare? Check out the 5D Mark 2 in action below!
Just watching the making of “Act of Valor” shows me how much the Canon 5D Mark 2 is revered within the film industry. Not only is it a great camera for taking photographs, it’s HD video given it’s high quality 35mm full frame sensor gives it that film quality.  The bottom screenshot shows the 5D Mark 2 with a Canon white lens which I think is the EF 70-200mm IS USM Mark 1.

5D in River Scene
Also, since this is a professional series camera, the 5D Mark 2’s durability in wet conditions, dusty environments, and to shock impact make it ideal for this action packed movie starring real active duty SEALs.  Btw, the screenshot below shows another 5D Mark 2 mounted to what I think is the EF 400mm F2.8L IS USM.

5d on the field

Reason why the 5D Mark 2 works well for Hollywood?

If you ask me, I think what makes the 5D mark 2 so much of a preferred camera for many big name Hollywood movies is:

  1. its full frame CMOS sensor
  2. Super cheap compared to older filming equipment!!! Great for the film budget.
  3. 24P
  4. the 5D Mark 2’s awesome low light capabilities
  5. usability with a wide range of professional EF lenses
  6. its reasonably small size and lightweight compared to those big movie cameras! The size of the 5D make it ideal for filming in small confined areas that can be used together with rigs, tripods, stabilizers, and our hands!

5D handheld

Whatever the case, I want to watch the movie because it features real active duty Navy Seals tearing up the place.

Interesting Fact About the Movie

An interesting fact I hear about this movie is that it didn’t go through the proper channels for approval by the Pentagon. However, it was finally green-lighted anyway because the movie could serve as a great recruitng tool and it doesn’t really reveal classified tactics and techniques. Really??? From the movie preview alone, I just learned how to snipe a guy without making any splashing noises!!! Also, I’m quite curious about some cool hardware they used such as the mini UAV’s to scan  surroundings from the air… I think I’m going to get that RQ11 Raven! What a really cool toy to have!

BTW, I totally promote breaking rules. Breaking rules definitely produces extraordinary results. Following them doesn’t!

One Question about Canon on the Battlefield

The last question I have is do SEALs really use Canon cameras in the battlefield for taking intelligence photos? As I was watching the preview, it showed one of the SEALs using a Canon 20D like the screenshot below. I know a lot of war journalist prefer the 5D Mark 2 to report the war. For SEALs, I think that the APS-C size sensor on the Canon 20D and cameras like  the Canon 7D gives them that extra 1.6 crop that is definitely a plus for reconnaissance shots. However, I think that Canon is sponsoring this film because usually war journalists and soldiers alike usually tape out the whites of the Canon brand so they won’t stand out to a trigger happy gunman. In the preview below, the Canon logo and model of the Dslr does stand out from the camoflauged SEAL as if it wanted to be seen by the audience. But then again… it’s just a movie right?

Canon 20D*All Images seen here are screenshots taken from the making of “Act of Valor’.


The coolest aspect about this movie is not the action or the cameras they used but from what I hear is the fact that none of the SEALS in the movie had their names in the credits. The movie credits the SEALs who died fighting since 9/11. That’s just another upvote for respect I got for the SEALs right there. They are fucking badasses!

For more info on the movie, check out . It’s out in theaters starting today. 

Note: As indicated in the comment below, other film cameras were used. It also notes the use of the awesome 7D for filming the movie but I didn’t see the 7D in the preview. The 5D mark 2 is easily distiguishable from the 7D because of it’s pentaprism bubble shape… if you don’t know what I’m talking about… don’t worry about it… it’s all geek talk.

*I use affiliate links at no cost to you. If you choose to make a purchase through my link I make a small commission. Thank you for trusting my recommendations!

2 thoughts on “Act of Valor using Canon 5D Mark 2”

  1. other equipment used
    Arriflex 235, Panavision Primo Lenses
    Arriflex 435 Xtreme, Panavision Primo Lenses
    Canon EOS 5D Mark II, Panavision Primo, Canon L-Series and Zeiss ZF Lenses
    Canon EOS 7D, Panavision Primo, Canon L-Series and Zeiss ZF Lenses
    Canon EOS-1D Mark IV, Panavision Primo, Canon L-Series and Zeiss ZF Lenses

  2. Cameras
    Most of the cameras we use for photography in the navy are made by Canon. I was actually surprised to see this movie was made with the old mark 2. 🙂


Leave a Comment