Filmmakers Detail the Immense Care They Took Capturing Free Solo Climb Up El Capitan in Yosemite

In 2017, champion free climber Alex Honnold scaled El Capitan at Yosemite National Park, a 3,000 foot cliff from base to summit, without the benefits of ropes or safety gear. The attempt alone was dangerous enough, but Hohnhold allowed filmmakers Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and husband Jimmy Chin to document this incredible feat as well. In the short documentary “What if He Falls?”, the two explain in detail, how much care they took in ensuring that both Honnold and each member of the film crew remained safe at all times.

In “What if He Falls?” filmmakers …take us inside the process of documenting Honnold’s quest for climbing glory — and the ethical calculus of filming a friend who could, with the slip of a finger, plummet to his death.

Here’s Honnold talking about his climb at a TED talk in October 2018