Air NZ creates ‘Most Epic Safety Video Ever Made’ in latest Hobbit-inspired safety demo

Air New Zealand has created another Hobbit-themed safety video ahead of the release of the third and final movie in Peter Jackson’s Middle Earth trilogy.

The video, which was shot outdoors rather than on board an aircraft, features an array of characters and cast from the movie and includes a cameo from the director himself. It was created in conjunction with Jackson’s production company Weta Workshop and directed by Kiwi filmmaker Taika Waititi, who also make an appearance as a wizard.

The video, shot over six days and branded by Air NZ as ‘The Most Epic Safety Video Ever Made’, is the airline’s second Hobbit-inspired safety demo, following a similar production in 2012 – An Unexpected Briefing – which clocked up 12 million online views.

The release of the final instalment of the trilogy, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, will bring to an end a 14-year association between Middle Earth and Air New Zealand which dates back to the first Lord of the Rings film in 2001.

Air New Zealand head of global brand development Jodi Williams said: “We are very proud to be the official airline of Middle-earth and have worked hard over the past three years to create highly effective global marketing campaigns, including distinctive branded aircraft and Hobbit-inspired online content, which have got the world talking about both our airline and destination New Zealand.”

The carrier has become known for its quirky marketing techniques which has included a safety demonstration with adventurer Bear Grylls and a series of promotional videos for its premium economy seats featuring Rico, a furry puppet whose inadvertent sexual innuendo was both popular and also controversial.

Collectively the airline’s safety videos have clocked up more than 30 million hits online.

Steve Jones


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