VIRGIN AMERICA REMIXES THE SAFETY VIDEO: AIRLINE'S NEW SAFETY VIDEO SET TO SONG AND DANCE
Hollywood Director Jon M. Chu and American Idol and So You Think You Can Dance Alums Tapped to Create First-of-its-Kind Video
Flyers Can Win Chance to Be Cast in a Future Version of Video by Showing off Their Best Freestyle #VXsafetydance Moves
SAN FRANCISCO, Oct. 29, 2013 /PRNewswire/ - Virgin America, the airline that first put an irreverent twist on the in-flight safety video in the U.S., is taking its pre-flight safety education to new heights with the first-ever domestic safety video set entirely to music and performed in dance. Launching on Google Play, YouTube and live on digital billboards across Times Square including the American Eagle billboard (at W. 46th Street & Broadway) at 12 p.m. ET today, the video will take to the skies on flights nationwide in November. Virgin America first made waves in the safety video genre in 2007, when it became the first domestic airline to feature a cheeky in-flight safety video across its fleet. The cult favorite animated video will still be featured onboard the airline's Red™ in-flight entertainment platform, but the new "VX Safety Dance" video will freshen up the rotation with a unique pre-flight safety experience that flyers will enjoy – and pay attention to. The new video was directed by Hollywood blockbuster film director (and Virgin America frequent flyer) Jon M. Chu (G.I. Joe: Retaliation, Step Up 2) and includes some of the top dancers, singers and choreographers from American Idol and So You Think You Can Dance – with production by Virgin Group's entertainment arm, Virgin Produced. The full-length safety video can be viewed now here.
In a safety video first, members of the public will have the opportunity to be cast in a future version of the video by submitting their own freestyle "#VXsafetydance" moves via Instagram video. Top-voted videos will be reviewed by director Jon M. Chu and choreographer judges, with the winner scoring a spot in a version of Virgin America's official safety video on flights in 2014. For more details, to enter the contest or to check out some of the dance battles already playing out to win a spot onboard, visit: www.virginamerica.com/safetyvideo
"We knew how much our guests loved the fun and irreverence of our current video, but after six years we wanted to give them something unexpected – a fresh take on what a safety video could be and even a chance to be a part of it, literally" saidJesseMcMillin,Creative Director at Virgin America."We thought, what better way to shake things up than to re-imagine the safety video through the language of music and dance? With our creative partners at Virgin Produced, a world class director, and some of the best and brightest music and dancing talent – not to mention our in-flight teammates, we brought this amazing idea to life. Changing the game is what Virgin America is all about, and we hope our guests have as much fun boppin' their heads to the new video as we had making it."
To celebrate the new video, the airline is launching a one-day "Buckle Up, To Get Down" special offer of up to 20%*off Virgin America flights for travel November 4, 2013- December 17, 2013 (restrictions apply). To get the deal, travelers can use the promo code GETDOWN on Virgin America's website at www.virginamerica.com by 11:59pm CT tonight, October 29, 2013.
In order to create something Virgin America flyers would once again find entertaining and informative, the airline enlisted the help of Virgin Produced to conceptualize the all-music and dance safety video and tapped famed Hollywood Director and Virgin America frequent flyer Jon M. Chu to develop and execute the vision. American Idol season nine alum, Todrick Hall, created the music and lyrics for the video, working with lead choreographers Jamal Sims and Emmy-nominated Christopher Scott – both of Step Up fame. The video also features So You Think You Can Dance alums, including Cyrus Spencer, Sasha Mallory, Phillip Chbeeb and Marko Germar. The airline's own creative, in-flight operations and safety teams worked closely together, with Federal Aviation Administration oversight, to ensure all safety regulations and requirements were met throughout the process. For more about the video: www.virginamerica.com/safetyvideo
"Virgin America's first safety video is probably the only one that I've ever paid attention to when flying – I'm a visual learner myself and making it fun and entertaining made a big difference for me," said Director Jon M. Chu. "Virgin America fans like me choose this airline because it has a really unique and fun flying experience, so I wanted to make sure this video lived up to that promise and pushed the envelope. I think we've successfully taken Virgin America into new, uncharted territory with this safety video, and I really hope to see people doing their own versions of the safety dance soon."
"The most important aspect of any safety video is that people actually pay attention to it. Too often the dry, perfunctory safety messaging used in the past was tuned out. We believe we have an obligation to create safety messaging that is not only accurate, but that holds the attention of everyone onboard – from the eight-year-old traveling with his parents on up," said Steve Forte, Chief Operating Officer at Virgin America. "We believe we were successful with our original video in creating a message that resonated. Using the universal languages of music and dance, we think even more people will pay attention, and hopefully be entertained at the same time."
The new safety video will be onboard all Virgin America flights beginning in November. Virgin America's original, animated safety video will still be available for viewing in-flight via the touch-screen Red™ entertainment platform. The dancers in the new safety video can be seen wearing kicks and clothes by Nike, Puma, Levis and Banana Republic. Partner Banana Republic provided their signature Tailored Slim suits worn by the stylishly pop-locking robotic men and helped the airline to design their new flight attendant uniforms just last year.
"When conceiving the new safety video, it was important to us to create a concept that broke new ground and disrupted the conventional, often mundane safety instruction," said Jason Felts, Chief Executive Officer at Virgin Produced. "With music deep within the DNA of the brand, we wanted to incorporate different genres of music and dance to not only grab the attention of flyers, but to convey the instructions in a completely innovative way."
The full video is available on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DtyfiPIHsIg&feature=youtu.be
For photos from Virgin America's new safety video (including behind the scenes footage) and teaser trailer: www.virginamerica.com/safetyvideo
For photos of Virgin America's unique aircraft:www.virginamerica.com/about/airline-photos/virgin-america-pictures.html
Broadcast quality video b-roll of Virgin America's unique cabins and destination footage can also be downloaded at: www.virginamerica.com/html/39049.zip