Behind the scenes of the latest ZEISS Hunting film production – by Daniela Holzer

St. Jacob
St. Jacob in the Defereggen valley is a municipality in Autrian Tirol. With just 5 inhabitants per square kilometre it is one of the least populated areas in Eastern Tirol.

Unreal – that is the best word to describe this barren landscape. Large fields with tufts of grass rising from the boggy ground alternate with rough, broken rock and ice-covered stones that make climbing a real test of courage.

Within minutes, clouds are rising from the valley and obscuring the view with a light grey mist that looks like a soft filter. Just as quickly, the sky tears apart and drenches the valley in an unreal light.

Within minutes, the weather changes. Surreal conditions for the latest ZEISS Hunting film production.

The Defereggen Valley in Austria is full of sights and atmospheric light moods in late September. The spectacular scenery here provides the perfect backdrop:

For a film production by ZEISS Hunting, which will soon showcase innovations

(just be patient and stay tuned if you’re feeling curious!).

A special monitor allows the team to keep an eye on the results during the production.

The bare facts of the production: 13 people, three filming days and four vehicles fully loaded with equipment.

Working together, the team manages to achieve the seemingly impossible in the Austrian Alps: tracking shots on rails, drone recordings and even a six-metre crane being built halfway up the mountain.

With these innovative filming techniques, we hope to find a new way of presenting hunting as a topic as well as people’s perceptions of hunters.

Johannes Fürst, Marketing Manager Hunting and Nature Observation at ZEISS

Those who work for ZEISS know all about what it means to be a hunter, and they understand the associated sensations and impressions. Many of them are passionate hunters themselves.

This explains the longing look in their eyes as they scan the steep rock walls during every filming break with the Victory SF. Maybe this is the place where we’ll find that one chamois to be the subject of the film’s mountain hunt.

Johannes Fürst from ZEISS shows on set, how to use the equipment properly.

Ready for everything – the team defies the poor weather conditions with yellow canvas covers.

Saturday morning: the weather changed overnight. Snow now covers the mountaintops, and thick clouds keep bringing new waves of precipitation.

The equipment is quickly made waterproof. In an emergency, even shower caps are used. People are prepared for everything.

Together they continue across the rough terrain. The camera is in a rig – a sort of harness to stabilise images – and this weighs heavily on the shoulders of our cameraman.

However, nobody complains. The team is used to extreme productions – and the spectacular changes in the weather make the experience of recording footage even more impressive for everyone.

The equipment is set up in the middle of the mountains.

Together they continue across the rough terrain.

We are looking forward to the final film. Until that time, there are some impressions from the set in the following gallery:

  • Short break for our protagonist Markus.

  • Matthias and Jerome from ZEISS capture everything with their cameras - of course using ZEISS optics.

  • Time to change the equipment.

  • Director Christopher prepares the props.

  • Project Manager Daniela keeps an eye on the course of the project.

  • Producer Laura takes care, that the equipment is sheltered from the rain.

It's a wrap! We are curious on the final result.