The original version was hailed as one of the best and longest-running police dramas on television. After a thirty year absence, Hawaii Five-O is back in prime time with its memorable theme song, exotic locales and colorful local characters. Only now it’s a modern high-def show with more scenery, more volume and great action sequences. And McGarrett flies a helicopter. Not just any helicopter, mind you, but Makani Kai’s Eurocopter, the same aircraft you can fly in for your tour of the island.
Our helicopters have been used in various Five-0 episodes for the fictitious Kekipi Island Tours, for Kamekona’s air tours, for a deadly Yakuza mission, to chase down kidnappers, to hoist Steve McGarrett and his mother above a downtown high rise so they could fast rope onto the roof of the building, and as a camera platform for breathtaking aerial scenics.
In the show’s first season, the aircraft is hijacked from our helipad with tourists in the back. The gunman demands at that the pilot fly to Molokai, but the aircraft does not have enough fuel to make the trip and has to put down when the fuel is exhausted. In a later scene, McGarrett and Chin Ho Kelly take off in hot pursuit in our second bird. They find the downed aircraft, track and arrest the bad guy, and Hawaii is safe once more. At least for another week.
Look for future episodes featuring our helicopter, the only one in Hawaii that provides superb aerial tours and fights crime.

The ramp area directly behind the Makani Kai facility became a staging area for all sorts of equipment and an army of production people as the Five-O team went to work.

Actors inside the helicopter prepare their lines as the crew prepares to shoot a scene. The aircraft is up on a stand to allow it to be moved and jostled during the shot; the scrim above the aircraft reduces harsh mid-day shadows and creates more even lighting.

Two camera crews track the helicopter as it lands to pick up Steve McGarrett and Chin Ho Kelly.

The dense vegetation of upper Manoa was used as a stand-in for the island of Molokai. This was a tricky spot to land because of the surrounding trees.

Makani Kai owner Richard Schuman and Alex O’Loughlin flash “shaka” after a successful shoot.

Our bird keeps pace with McGarrett, Dano and Chin Ho as they speed towards a rendezvous offshore.

Richard Schuman gets his inner Yakuza going for this scene in which he flies the bad guys on a mission to hunt down McGarrett and Wo Fat.

A stunt double for McGarrett’s mom fast ropes her way onto the rooftop of one of downtown’s highest buildings.

The boss usually flies whenever Hawaii Five-0 comes knocking. Privilege of rank and all that. Occasionally the show’s producers will ask Schuman to report to wardrobe and makeup so that he can double for one of the actors. Here, Schuman put on his best Wo Fat impression with the real deal, Mark Dacascos.

That’s Five-0 cameraman Mark again, along with Richard Schuman, a beat-up Daniel Dae Kim and a trauma nurse between scenes at Halawa Prison.

Stunt doubles and Richard take a breather, again at the prison.

Pre-dawn shoot with Kamekona (Wylie Taylor).

Alex and Richard, Blood Brothers.

Richard and friend looking sufficiently bad ass on the fifty yard line of Aloha Stadium.

In this scene, Richard actually doubled for Scott. Must’ve been a distant shot…

It’s estimated that Hawaii Five-0 costs over $1-million per episode to produce, and its easy to see why.

One of our A-Stars done up in Honolulu Police livery for a Five-0 episode about a killer drone.

Here they are, loaded for bear, approaching the ship. That’s Richard Schuman flying and keeping a close watch on the boat below.

Stunt doubles for McGarrett and Danno are convincing in their roles.

This is from the first season: our favorite crime fighting helicopter blocks the escape route of a couple of kidnappers.

The A-Stars have posed in at least five different paint schemes for the show, from Kamekona’s tour helo to a Yakuza gunship.

Richard Schuman pulls an aggressive backing maneuver as he hustles the aircraft to yet another crime scene.

An attempted breakout of Halawa Prison. These guys have a lot of fun shooting the show.

Waikiki, early morning, and the bird is ready to start taking visitors on scenic tours.

"It takes a village". But with Five-0, it’s more like it takes an army.

Upstairs, one of our offices was repainted to look like a detention cell in a prison. Note the fake one-way mirror on the wall and the bars placed in the windows.

Now down on the ramp, aircraft, actors and crew shoot a scene where a gunman leaps into the helicopter and demands to be flown to Molokai.

Makani Kai Helicopters owner Richard Schuman, standing in for Steve McGarrett, makes a radical takeoff to give chase to a bad guy. Our regular air tours do not engage in such dramatic flight profiles.

Steve McGarrett and Chin Ho Kelly bound from the aircraft, guns drawn, to track and apprehend a suspect.

The Five-0 crew hustles to pull together another scene.

McGarrett plugs one of the baddies who kidnapped his sister.

The Makani Kai A-Star done up in Kamekona’s air tour livery.

Wylie Taylor (Kamekona), relaxes in the Makani Kai golf cart between takes.

Here’s our favorite Hawaii crime fighters cooling their heels in the waters off Waikiki Beach. From left to right: Scott Caan (Danny “Danno” Williams), Alex O’Loughlin (Steve McGarrett), Grace Park (Kono Kalakaua), and Daniel Dae Kim (Chin Ho Kelly).

Here, Schuman pals with Jason Scott Lee, who portrayed an undercover Detective Kaleo at Halawa Prison.

As we say here in Hawaii, “What? Like beef?”

Kamekona (Wylie Taylor) and Richard Schuman.

Those big ceiling fans give the illusion of the helicopter’s rotors turning during various scenes.

Richard got into the business because he liked to fly helicopters. Makeup was never in the picture.

Richard and Scott Caan.

It doesn’t take just a village, it takes an army to get the shot exactly right. The crew prepares yet another scene at the Honolulu International Airport.

Richard doubled for cult leader Steven Carver (played by Bruce Davidson) in this episode.

This one was cool: a practice session where our heroes, assisted by some no-nonsense SWAT folks, fast rope onto a moving vessel.

Two men down, two more to go. Look out bad guys.

It seems simple enough: just slide down a rope onto a boat. It’s harder than it looks.

"We’ll set the charge off on the count of three." One, two...boom! That’s so the stunt guys wouldn’t grimace prior to the "grenade" blast. The stunt coordinator records the scene for posterity.

That’s Alex O’Loughlin seemingly at the controls. What you don’t see is Richard Schuman piloting from the left seat.

A happy gunman: Yakuza baddies in this episode are after McGarrett’s head.

Kamekona (Wylie Taylor) and Richard Schuman flash the shaka.

The actors relax as the crew prepares another scene in front of Kamekona’s lunch wagon.

Cameraman Mark Gerasimenko gets close to the action in the prison breakout episode.

Hey, what’s the Magnum P.I. chopper doing in this scene? Wrong show.