A couple of days ago I posted about my disbelief of Emirates’ latest promotional video actually being real. Well, the airline has now posted an incredible behind the scenes video that proves just how real this was.
Emirates’ incredible Burj Khalifa video
Last week Emirates posted a video to social media of someone in a flight attendant uniform holding up five signs that have different phrases on them.
The video is intended to celebrate the UAE being taken off of the UK’s “Red List,” which should greatly increase demand for Emirates flights to & from the UK.
In the short 33 second video, you can see a flight attendant holding up signs that read:
- “Moving The UAE To The UK Amber List”
- “Has Made Us Feel”
- “On Top Of The World”
- “Fly Emirates”
- “Fly Better”
At first it looks like the flight attendant is just standing in the sky, but then at the end of the video the camera zooms out, and you see that the person is actually standing on top of Dubai’s Burj Khalifa, which is the world’s tallest building.
This wasn’t a green screen?!
I had assumed that this was simply a green screen video, because, well, why wouldn’t it be? Nope, apparently that’s not the case…
There was indeed someone standing 830 meters (~2,720 feet) up, on the tip of the Burj Khalifa. Specifically, skydiver and general adventurer Nicole Smith-Ludvik was the person seen in the video. Not only that, but she is actually an Emirates flight attendant as well, so that’s even cooler. She climbed all the way up to the very top of the Burj Khalifa, and then a helicopter and drone company did the filming.
She’s one of the few people to have stood at the very top of the Burj Khalifa — she’s in good company, as Tom Cruise and the Crown Prince of Dubai are among the others who have done this.
As Smith-Ludvik describes describes her involvement:
“This is, without a doubt, one of the most amazing and exciting stunts I’ve ever done. A big shout out to Emirates Airlines for your creative marketing idea! It was a pleasure being a part of the team.”
Meanwhile here’s what TECS Event Services, which was behind the project, had to say:
“Being part of such a special project – not only for the fact that we were trusted to help bring this to life (yes, this is very very real), but also what it means for so many families who have been separated from their families between here in Dubai and the UK. Definitely a project we’ll remember forever.”
Emirates has now put out a behind the scenes video showing exactly how this was filmed.
So, here’s what we know about how this worked:
- The crew took the elevator to the 160th floor of the Burj Khalifa, and then spent an hour climbing a (mostly narrow) staircase to get to the very top of the building
- Someone went up there with the “star” to help her get situated, presumably including carrying the signs
- While up there, the woman was “harnessed,” as there was a pole behind her, and her uniform “clipped” into that
This is simply unbelievable, and this video isn’t getting the attention it deserves given that it’s real. I’m getting vertigo just watching the behind the scenes video. I’m amazed the airline used this stunt just to announce the reopening of travel between the UK and UAE (obviously this is a significant development for Emirates, but it’s not like there was a bunch of fanfare around this stunt).
Below is a video that shows the process of climbing the stairs to the very top of the Burj Khalifa, which is unrelated to this particular stunt.
Interestingly one part of the video does seem to be altered — specifically, it appears that the flight attendant just shuffles two signs, even though there are five phrases written on signs. We can tell because one sign has a fold at the top corner, and you can see it cycled through a few times. So clearly the signs didn’t actually say anything, but that was edited after the fact. It makes me wonder if they actually did this stunt a while back, and then just saved it for the right opportunity.
Emirates posted a video of a flight attendant standing at the very top of the Burj Khalifa, and it’s real. A behind the scenes video has now been posted showing how this video was produced, and it’s pretty amazing. And here I was thinking that we were just getting Punk’d…
What do you make of this Emirates stunt involving the Burj Khalifa?