Craig Hosking is a film pilot and aerial coordinator. He has worked on more than 150 films, television shows, and commercials. Some of his films include “Dunkirk,” “Interstellar,” “The Aviator,” “Star Trek: Into the Darkness,” “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales,” “The Dark Knight Rises,” and “Spectre: 007.” He has worked on multiple Mission Impossible and Jurassic Park films.
As a boy, he was interested in anything to do with cameras. His home held a fully equipped dark room and he developed his own negatives and printed his own photos. He took pictures of low light landscapes, underwater images, and aerial shots.
Hosking was also interested in flight. His father owned an airplane and helicopter charter company and Hosking learned to fly an airplane at the age of eight. At twelve he flew helicopters. At age 16 he was legally able to fly alone and became the youngest helicopter pilot in the world. He believed he would some day take over his father’s business, which specialized in mountain utility work, wildland firefighting, power line construction, and oil and mineral exploration.
After serving a full-time mission in New Zealand for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, he continued to work for his father, but branched out and began flying in airshows. He and his friend Danny Sorenson modified an airplane by putting wheels on the top of the plane as well as the bottom so it could take off or land from either upside down or right side up. They called the plane “Double Take.” During the 1980s, his father’s business went under, consequently Hosking was glad for his work with airshows, but he did not want to do them for a permanent career.
His father had friends who had been film pilots and he planned to break into the field by visiting Los Angeles for two weeks every six months. He had a job after three days on his first visit.
Hosking moved his familiy to Los Angeles in 1987 and began representing Tom Friedkin’s aircraft company Cinema Air, finding film jobs that needed helicopters. Although he didn’t know anybody in Hollywood, he said he sneaked onto studio lots and pretended he knew what he was doing.
Not only did he find work for Cinema Air, he also began taking side jobs piloting film aircraft. His reputation began to grow—he had great skills as a pilot and a great eye for film. Hosking eventually began working full-time as an aerial freelancer after Friedkin sold him a helicopter under market value.
Hosking always selected jobs that would allow him to be a good father.
- “A real epic time in my life came when my kids were young and I was offered a movie called Black Hawk Down. They wanted me to go to Morocco for about six weeks, and at the time I was coaching my son’s roller hockey team,” Hosking said. “I just decided to stay home and coach roller hockey. . . . I didn’t want to miss being a dad.”
He also selects work based on how the script and content fit his values.
Once his children were grown, he began taking jobs outside the country and has had the opportunity to attend church in more than thirty countries.
Some of his more unique experiences include flying in close formation with the Stealth Bomber and the President’s Air Force One 747, and filming from the back seat of an f-14 in supersonic flight.
He has worked on films for the Church, including co-directing a Polynesian Cultural Center Theater film, which was special for him because of his mission among the Maori people. His work with a film for the Palmyra Visitor’s Center brought him a special spiritual experience filming in the Sacred Grove.
- As Hosking piloted the helicopter and looked down at the actor portraying young Joseph kneeling in the Sacred Grove, it changed his entire understanding of the First Vision. At that moment, he caught a glimpse of the restoration from Heavenly Father’s point of view as he descended on the grove from above.