Was the movie 'Jaws' the first film to incorporate underwater video of a live great white shark?

The movie Jaws, released June 20, 1975, was a box office blockbuster with a plot that revolved around a great white shark wreaking havoc around a fictional island called Amity off Long Island, New York.  Based on the 1974 novel of the same name by Peter Benchley, the film included impressive underwater video shot by diving and spear-fishing aficionados Ron and Valery Taylor.  The shark was filmed in waters off Australia and the video included a scale model of a dive cage, complete with a small-framed actor, which made the great white seem bigger by comparison. 

However, Jaws was not the first to feature great white sharks in their natural habitat.  The film Blue Water, White Death is a documentary of sharks in their natural habitat which included the first underwater video of great white sharks ever presented.  Released on June 1, 1971, Blue Water, White Death was released four years before the movie Jaws.  Similar to Jaws, Blue Water, White Death includes video shot by Ron and Valerie Taylor along with footage by underwater photographer Stan Waterman.  The film took a full 9 months to complete during which time the film crew, lead by filmmaker and photojournalist Peter Gimbel, traveled between the waters off South Africa and Australia in search of great white sharks.  While the video was made using technology of limited quality compared to today’s standards, the scenes in the film are spectacular for their time.  The adventures of the crew were also documented in the book Blue Meridian: the Search for the Great White Shark (1971) by award-winning writer Peter Matthiessen. 

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