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SOURCE Virgin America
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
Today Only, Airline Launches "Buckle Up, To Get Down" Special Offer of Up to 20% off Flights Nationwide* (restrictions apply)
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" said Jesse McMillin, 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
About Virgin America: Headquartered in California, Virgin America, which celebrated its sixth year of operations in August, offers guests attractive fares and a host of innovative features aimed at reinventing air travel and has swept the industry awards. Most recently, Virgin America was named "Best Domestic Airline" in Travel + Leisure's 2013 'World's Best' Awards,' an award the carrier has won every year since 2008. In May, Virgin America was voted "Best Airline" by Consumer Reports Magazine. In April, Virgin America topped the 2012 Airline Quality Rating, a joint research project conducted annually by faculty at Wichita State University and Purdue University that analyzes airline data as reported by the DOT. Virgin America was named "Best Domestic Airline" in the Conde Nast Traveler 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013'Readers' Choice' Awards. The airline's base of operations is San Francisco International Airport (SFO)'s sleek and sustainable Terminal 2. Virgin America offers Gogo™ WiFi on every flight and hosts the largest in-flight entertainment library in the North American skies via the touch-screen Red™ platform, and provides power outlets near every seat. Since its launch in 2007, Virgin America has created 2,600 new jobs and now flies to San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Newark, Washington D.C. (IAD and DCA), Las Vegas, San Diego, Seattle, Boston, Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, Dallas-Fort Worth, Los Cabos, Cancun, Chicago, Puerto Vallarta, Palm Springs (seasonal), Philadelphia, Portland, San Jose, Austin and Anchorage (seasonal). For more information: www.virginamerica.com
About Jon M. Chu: Jon M. Chu is known for his visually stunning blockbuster event films as well as his works across various genres from groundbreaking digital series to commercials and even live concerts. Chu marked his directorial feature debut with 2008's Step Up 2:The Streets where his use of movement and storytelling earned him a Teen Choice Award as Breakout Director of the Year as well as an MTV Movie Award. Since then, his films have included Justin Bieber: Never Say Never, – an innovative blend of concert film and biopic and Paramount Pictures' G.I. Joe: Retaliation. Chu is currently developing Paramount Pictures' G.I. Joe 3.
About Virgin Produced: Virgin Produced is the film and television development, packaging and production arm of Sir Richard Branson's Virgin Group. Led by Co-Founder / CEO Jason Felts and Chief Creative Officer Justin Berfield, Virgin Produced breaks the archaic models of traditional Hollywood by providing a collaborative environment that embraces talent, so they can best create and inspire while putting quality and innovation first. Launched in 2010, Virgin Produced's films include thriller Limitless, social change film Machine Gun Preacher, epic action Immortals, award-winning Departure Date, comedies Movie 43 and 21 & Over and bio-pic Jobs, which cumulatively have grossed over $647 million in worldwide box office. With an equal focus on television and commercial branded entertainment, Virgin Produced has a robust slate of scripted and unscripted projects in development at most broadcast and premium cable networks. In April 2012, Virgin Produced launched its own digital network of Virgin Produced Channels, with premium programming of lifestyle, music, travel, technology and comedy content currently available onboard Virgin airlines and expanding across other Virgin transportation, mobile, broadband, health club, hotel and retail operating companies. Very simply; Virgin Produced creates content meant to inspire and entertain with direct access to reach over 60 million loyal Virgin brand fans globally.
*Terms and Conditions: This offer ends at 11:59pm PDT on October 29, 2013. This offer is valid only for nonstop travel; offer is not valid for any connect or multi-city itineraries. Promo code is valid for non-refundable Main Cabin tickets only. Promo code is valid for a 10% discount off the base fare for travel on Mondays, Thursdays, and Fridays and/or a 20% discount off the base fare for travel on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays. Discount is not valid for travel on Sundays. Blackout dates are November 22, 2013 through December 3, 2013. Discount will apply for travel between November 4, 2013 and December 17, 2013 for the following routes, in either direction: LAXMCO, LAXCUN, SFOCUN, SFOPVR, and SFOSJD. Discount will apply for travel between November 8, 2013 and December 17, 2013 for the following routes, in either direction: AUSSFO, DFWLAX, DFWSFO, SEALAX, SEASFO, PDXSFO, LAXSFO, LAXSJC, LASLAX, LASSFO, and SANSFO. Discount will apply for travel between November 12, 2013 and December 17, 2013 for the following routes, in either direction: BOSLAX, BOSSFO, EWRLAX, EWRSFO, JFKLAX, JFKSFO, JFKLAS, IADLAX, IADSFO, PHLLAX, PHLSFO, FLLLAX, FLLSFO, ORDLAX, and ORDSFO. Promo code may be used only towards newly booked travel and may not be applied to prior bookings. Promo code discount will be deducted off of base fare. Base fares do not include Passenger Facility Charges of up to $9 each way, September 11th Security Fees of up to $5 each way and a Federal Segment Tax of $3.90 per domestic segment. A segment is a takeoff and landing. For service to/from Mexico, base fares do not include the U.S. Immigration User Fee of $7, the U.S. APHIS fee of $5, the U.S. Customs processing fee of $5.50, a U.S. International Arrival/Departure Tax of $17.20 each way and additional taxes/fees of up to $70, including: Mexico International Departure Tax and Mexico Tourism Tax. Promo code may not be redeemed for cash. Promo code may only be used for bookings made on virginamerica.com and is only valid on itineraries of 4 or less guests. Offer is not transferable and cannot be combined with any other offers. Seats are limited, subject to availability, and may not be available on all flights. If travel is changed or cancelled, promo code discount will become invalid. Changes or cancellations can be made for a $100 fee per guest through all channels, plus any increase in fare, if applicable. Tickets purchased through Virgin America's reservation call center will cost an additional $20 per itinerary guest; this amount is non refundable if travel is changed or cancelled. Fares will not be honored retroactively or in exchange for any wholly or partially used ticket. Fares, routes, fees and schedules are subject to change without notice. For non-refundable Main Cabin, Virgin America will accept one (1) piece of checked baggage up to 50 pounds for $25 for each ticketed. The fee per guest for each additional checked bag up to 50 pounds from the second (2) to the tenth (10) is $25. Additional fees apply to baggage exceeding these weight limitations, and other baggage restrictions may apply.
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