Act of Valor is an upcoming 2012 American war film directed by Mike McCoy and Scott Waugh, and written by Kurt Johnstad. It stars Alex Veadov, Rosalyn Sanchez, Nestor Serrano, Emilio Rivera and actual active duty U.S. Navy SEALs. The film is scheduled to be released on February 24, 2012.
Act of Valor began as a recruitment video for the U.S. military's Naval Special Warfare Command. In 2007, Mike McCoy and Scott Waugh of Bandido Brothers Production filmed a video for the Special Warfare Combatant-craft Crewmen which led the Navy to allow them to use SEALs for Act of Valor. None of the SEALs' names will appear in the credits of the film.
Relativity Media acquired the rights to the project on June 12, 2011 for $13 million and a $30 million in prints and advertising commitment. Deadline.com called it "the biggest money paid for a finished film with an unknown cast". The production budget was estimated between $15 million and $18 million.
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Filming took place in Cambodia where an explosion was shot in Phnom Penh with 300 children as extras. Scenes were shot in San Diego at Blue Foot Bar and in a house in the North Park area. Other locations included Mexico, Puerto Rico, Ukraine, Florida, and at the John C. Stennis Space Center in Mississippi. The crew filmed at Navy training sites to provide realistic settings, such as a drug cartel base, a terrorist camp on an isolated island, and a smuggler's yacht.
Cinematographer Shane Hurlbut used a Canon EOS 5D Mark II camera with Zeiss ZF and Panavision Primo lenses. The cameras followed the SEALs' planned out missions in the film. Hurlbut used an 18mm Zeiss ZF mounted on the SEALs' helmets to capture their point of view. The 25mm Zeiss ZF was used to capture natural light coming through windows. The 21mm Zeiss ZF was used as a stake cam so a truck could drive over it. The Navy held final cut privileges in order to remove any frames to address security concerns and kept raw footage to use for real-life training and other purposes.