New ‘Act of Valor’ Live Ammunition Featurette

Published 3 years ago by , Updated February 5th, 2012 at 6:36 pm,

act valor real bullets featurette New Act of Valor Live Ammunition Featurette

Everything from the casting of actual Navy SEALs to the intimate handheld photography in Relativity Media’s upcoming Act of Valor is being utilized to produce the closest thing to a fully authentic and “fly on the wall” documentation of the average SEAL’s lifestyle – just short of strapping a camera to a SEAL’s head while they head to work, that is.

The latest featurette released for the film includes interviews with stunt experts-turned-directors Mike McCoy and Scott Waugh, along with cinematographer Shane Hurlbut (Terminator Salvation), discussing how both they and the cast further risked life and limb which producing this flick – seeing how the combat sequences in Act of Valor feature live ammunition (and not the customary blanks).

Act of Valor chronicles the experiences of the Bandito Platoon, a brigade of SEALs whose rescue of a kidnapped CIA operative blows the lid on a deadly global terrorist plot that has “potentially unimaginable consequences” for the U.S. The soldiers travel by air and sea around the world, in their attempts to thwart the would-be deadly plot against the lives of thousands of innocent civilians – all while attempting to stay alive, in the hopes of reuniting with their loved ones back home.

Check out the “real bullets” featurette for Act of Valor below:

Give Act of Valor credit: the film looks to come as close to being a legitimate cinéma vérité experience as any, as far as its portrayal of the realities of warfare and contemporary military technology is concerned. The use of practical effects in general tends to result in more convincingly raw and engagingly gritty action, but McCoy and Waugh have notched the stakes up even higher by throwing live-fire and real military men (and women) into the mix. Based on preliminary footage, their efforts look to be reflected in the final product.

Kurt Johnstad’s (300) screenplay for Act of Valor, by comparison, sounds like it features a pretty basic point A to point B to point C plot, with dramatic scenes meant to better humanize the SEAL characters scattered here and there, between the set pieces. Then again, this film is meant to directly reflect the often-harsh realities of the SEAL lifestyle – and not serve as a thematic mediation on the condition of being at war (a la Full Metal Jacket, The Hurt Locker, etc.) – so, as long as the “down time” and character beats in Act of Valor don’t end up up feeling like filler, this movie could very well pack the tumultuous punch it’s aiming for.

We shall see how it all goes down when Act of Valor hit theaters in the U.S. on February 24th, 2012.

Source: Relativity Media

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  1. I saw this movie in an advanced screening. This scene was part of a pretty long action sequence, and it must be one of the best action sequences I’ve seen in a long time in a movie.

  2. “…just short of strapping a camera to a soldier’s head while they head to work, that is.”

    Um, I was under the impression that they DID strap on some cams for the PoV shots. Is that not right?

    I have another question. My understanding is that no Special Forces personnel – including Navy SEALS – are ever allowed to be photographed. So how does that square with the producers claim that these are “active duty” SEALS?

    • Don’t think that’s true. Members of various special forces groups are photographed all of the time… Hell, some of them love the attention. A lot of them are on documentaries as well.

    • Also, regarding the strapping a camera to a soldier’s head thing. I think what he means is when they go to actual combat, not just filming a movie. These guys were not “at work” so to speak, they were doing it just to film the movie…

    • They had to shoot scenes when the SEALs were “on break,” basically, which is why the film took over two years to complete.

    • i think they’re allowed to be filmed but their real names and other personal info cannot be revealed. i know that the tier one cannot be revealed at all b/c the 3 tier one operatives that where consulting for medal of honour had their faces blurred and voices distorted.

      and yes they did use helmet cams for some scenes in the movie (as evident in the trailers), which imo is great for those moments when the team has to raid a house or is running down a long strip after or during a firefight, it shows us how intense things can get and furthers the war feel for those of us who aren’t in military groups.

      • @jwalka

        I’m not saying this is definitely the case, but in the case of the video game, they could have just done the whole blur out their faces and distort their voice thing as a gimmick to make them seem more mysterious. Makes you think they consulted some super spies instead of some normal people who happen to be in special forces…

        Again, not saying that’s definitely the case, but I wouldn’t be surprised. Marketting is kind of crazy sometimes…

        • That theory seems a bit of a reach.

          • Oh yah, you’re right, it’s a complete reach that a company will use gimmicks to try to sell a product. My mistake man…

            • idk the way they spoke in the dev diaries and the way they assisted in the games development hint that they might actually be real tier 1 operatives – the guys that do the dirtiest laundry for the US gov, stuff that no one besides them and maybe some suit wearing old guy might know of. i mean we didnt know anything about the bin laden raid until after it happened and even then we don’t know any specific details about who did what etc, so there’s a good chance that they where real tier one operatives.

              • @jwalka

                I never said I doubted their identities, I’m only talking about the “need” to black out their faces and distort their voices.

    • FYI, they are allowed as the previous person stated, but as long as they are not active duty (related active missions ) . My brother is in the USMC and RECON and he says the same thing which goes for all active service branches .

  3. I think it is stupid that they are calling this realistic when there is like 4-5 fireball explosions in the trailer. Look up actual grenade and rpg explosions, there might be a little fire but it is mostly concussive force/shrapnel. The RPG to the truck really ticked me off.

    • Well, they do still have some hollywood effects in the movie. The fireballs, how slow RPG’s travel where in real life hey are almost too fast to really see like you see them in movies, and too much muzzle flash. But you know how it goes, if they take away too much of that, the majority of movie goers don’t know the truth, they’ll think something is missing because they’re convinced that’s how those things are supposed to look…

    • i agree with ken, not only that but if everything was super realistic then we wouldn’t see anything such as where the bullets are going, who is shooting who etc etc. this movie will have the same style as saving ryan and black hawk down – everything is real minus a few details here and there for entertainments sake.

      • @jwalka

        I would agree with Black Hawk Down, but not really Saving Private Ryan. That was definitely a tad leaning more toward drama than realism when compared to Black Hawk Down and Act of Valor. Good movie still, and some scenes were definitely a good representation of the real thing, but BHD definitely has SPR beat in terms of authenticity in my opinion.

        You know, come to think of it, I think Black Hawk Down is probably one of the only movies that actually point out just how loud gunfire is. Albeit it was done in a kind of humorous way. Those two were definitely the comic relief in an otherwise bleak and serious movie…

        • yeah, my only peev with the movie was its run time, it felt like it went on for ages. they could have easily shaved 30 or so minutes off the final thing and still kept the intensity of the final thing we saw.

  4. “Act of Valor is being utilized to produce the closest thing to a fully authentic and “fly on the wall” documentation of the average SEAL’s lifestyle – just short of strapping a camera to a soldier’s head while they head to work, that is.”

    SEALS are Sailors.. as in NAVY. I wish the writers and media would get this stuff right. It’d just be kinda nice to see someone pay attention for once. Especially if you’re doing an article.. just lazy and disrespectful to our efforts and sacrifices.

    Navy: Sailors/Seaman
    USAF: Airmen
    Army: Soldiers
    Marines….. Marines.

    • Take a deep breath, relax. His intentions were not to disrespect anyone. It’s not like the writer wrote something negative toward those in service. So he got some terminology wrong. It’s not a big deal, relax, geez… Go focus your anger on those people who are actually bad-mouthing our troops…

        • @My2Cents – I understand it is frustrating to someone who is or has been in the military when a civilian uses the incorrect term when referring to a member of our Armed Forces but you/they have to remember that most people aren’t aware of this and don’t even know there is a difference. It isn’t a sign of disrespect and shouldn’t be taken as such.

          Now if another military person uses the incorrect term it is to be disrespectful.

          You really shouldn’t get to bent out of shape over it.

          Paul Young

        • @My2Cents

          Don’t need to wait for that. I have several friends who were/are in the Marines. One was in the Marines, then a few years after he got out, he enlisted into the Army National Guard, so technically he’s a Marldier, or a Soldrine, lol. But anyway, before he joined the Army, people have referred to him as a soldier, he’s never gotten angry, he might correct them, but as long as they’re not saying it on purpose to disrespect him, he’s never had a problem with that. I think we’re all aware that regular civilians don’t know, nor do they HAVE to know, all of the details about the military. As long as they appreciate what we do, that’s all that matters to be honest with you. :-)

          Although I have to agree that sometimes people using the wrong terms do irritate me. One bit pet-peave of mine is people calling magazines “clips.” Arg, that annoys the crap out of me.

          PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT!!! You do not reload your weapon with “clips.” They are called MAGAZINES, same name as the things with pages, but instead of pages, it has ROUNDS in them, or what you call, “bullets” which are just the projectiles that get shot out… Anyway, seriously, we haven’t used “clips” since the M1 Garand, so please, they are MAGAZINES!!! lol. 😀 Well, we still use stripper clips to load magazines, but whatever, that’s not what you guys are talking about when you say clip… 😛

          • Ack, “big pet-peave” not “bit” lol.

          • @KenJ – Wholeheartedly agree. Also, I got a bunch of new clips for my gun. :)

            Paul Young

    • @My 2 Cents – No disrespect intended bud. We at Screen Rant are HUGE supporters of our military and have the utmost respect for those who have and are serving. I do however understand why would take offense to this if you are in the military. I have several friends serving and have been corrected more than once.

      That being said, there is no reason to call us lazy. A gentle kind worded reminder to us civilians is all that would have been necessary.

      I’ll get it corrected.


      Paul Young

    • And I thought members of the USAF are called flyboys?? 😉

      LOL, I’m kidding of course. 😛

      • Ken J,

        LOL… um, those are those spoiled mofo’s in the flight suits who dance around who play beer pong at the club while thowing the ball with a pinky in the air.. pfft!

        You may call the rest of us “Desk Jockeys or Power Point Rangers!”

        • And I thought it was the USCF??

          United States Chair Force?

          LOL!! Ok, I’ll stop, I’m kidding, seriously, but Power Point Rangers, that’s a good one. :-)

          Have you seen the mock recruitment video some Flybo… err, I mean Airmen made mocking how boring the real Air Force is if you’re not a pilot? Basically they took the same hard rock soundtrack the real recruitment video plays, but instead of scenes of F-22’s doing barrel rolls, and people fast-roping out of helicopters and all of that cool stuff they always show in those, they show themselves sweeping the floor, taking out the garbage, typing on a computer, and stuff like that, lol, it’s pretty hilarious. If I find it again, I’ll definitely link it to you. :-) I think you’d appreciate it.

  5. Sorry,
    Should have said “those are THE spoiled…”

  6. Thanks for this extra doze of movie. i can’t wait to get myself an original copy.