More than 29,00 people from 125 countries submitted their favorite HERO9 Black clips for the chance to be featured in the third annual Million Dollar Challenge highlight reel. Only 56 creators made the cut, earning almost $18,000 a piece. 

 

What happens when you stumble across an abandoned waterpark and just so happen to be a professional FPV pilot with ripping skater friends? We caught up with HERO9 Black Million Dollar Challenge Awardee Benoit Finck to find out—after all, he is the man behind this dreamy skate line.

GoPro: Tell us more about how you got your Million Dollar shot.

Benoit: To get this Million Dollar shot, we tried to explore all possible settings of the GoPro. We had the idea for the shot—with all these pillars going up in the background, the HERO9 Black on the floor and someone jumping over it—but we did’t know what precise settings we wanted (high resolution or higher frame rate). So we ended up shooting the same trick in every possible resolution and frame rate to see what came out best.

 

We heard your full-time job is FPV pilot? That’s epic. Tell us how you landed that.

Before being a professional FPV pilot, I was working as a creative for advertising, writing scripts for videos and spending time on set to ensure we were sticking to the storyline and adjusting things if needed. I first started flying FPV drones for the excitement and fun. Then, I started making videos on YouTube and slowly, people started asking me if I could shoot for them or their brands. 

Check out my highlight reel below!

What inspired you to get into FPV originally?

I saw a guy flying one day and thought it was the coolest thing I’d ever seen. I asked him a bunch of questions, and he gave me some advice. When I went home, I ordered a small FPV drone to fly in my apartment called a TinyWhoop. I started watching a lot of YouTube videos about it and realized all the cool stuff I could do with it—I was hooked!

Do you have any other exciting plans for 2021 that you can share? 

Well, it’s really hard to make plans for the future these days! But this year, I hope to take fellow pilots under my wing and help them become full-time FPV pilots as well. Also, I’m working on getting a proper office/workshop because my drones have invaded my living room! The rest isn’t exactly up to me, but I’m hoping for some great collabs with athletes and artists this year.

Do you have a dream location to shoot?

If I had to pick one, it would be Hashima Island in Japan. This place is a full blown abandoned city on an island. I would love to do something over there for sure!

Do you have any tips for aspiring FPV pilots?

Practice as much as you can, research as much as you can and be persistent because it’s not an easy hobby, but the reward is definitely there when you get to it! And most of all, HAVE FUN and do stuff that scare you a little bit.

Watch the HERO9 Black Million Dollar Challenge highlight reel here.