Saturday, May 18, 2013


Last week I picked up a little DVD treat for myself: The Immortal Beaver is a 50-minute-long documentary from 2007 on the de Havilland Canada DHC-2 "Beaver" aircraft.

First flown on August 16th, 1947, by company test pilot Russell Bannock, the little aeroplane that could and would has come to be something of a prized machine today -- if you have the money. One 'celebrity' Beaver pilot is actor Harrison Ford, who came to want an example of the little legend while shooting the movie Six Days Seven Nights. According to Ford, the one he ended up buying and having restored was an ex-CIA "Air America" machine. (I love the expression on his face when he imparts this sweet piece of intelligence. Maybe I was imagining something that was not there. It's possible.)

"Harrison Ford - Pilot." Right on, man! I really don't care for your boring movies, anyway.

The documentary presents a good overview of the Beaver, and the film's narrative thrust is guided by the restoration of an ex-U.S. Army specimen found discarded for years at an 'aircraft graveyard' in the Arizona desert. The filmmakers cover the race by Viking Aircraft, of Victoria, British Columbia, to restore the machine in time for the DHC-2's 60th Anniversary.

Highly recommended if you care about this sort of thing. By the way, the name of the film's featured Beaver?... "Olivia" (get it?).

Good article on the de Havilland Canada DHC-2 "Beaver"...

DHC-2 "Beaver" enthusiast Neil Aird, and former de Havilland Canada test pilot Russell Bannock.
Pratt and Whitney engine on a hoist.
A famous actor at the controls.
This is better than the Millennium Falcon.
Re-engined and reborn. Beauty, eh?


DonaldAR said...

I'm sorry, but: "The... *Beaver*... primarily known as a *bush* plane..."? Am I the only only one channelling Beavis and Butt-Head here? Uh-huh. Huh-huh.

Barry Smight said...

I'm an aviation nut and I missed that connection.

Thanks for the comment.