Air New Zealand safety video: rapping All Blacks and aliens
Israel Dagg raps safety instructions in Men in Black pastiche featuring Richie McCaw, Dan Carter and Rip Torn
With the Rugby World Cup just a few weeks away Air New Zealand has released a new rugby-themed safety video featuring members of the all-conquering All Blacks. The Men in Black-themed song-and-dance extravaganza stars a host of current players as well as cameos from former England captain Martin Johnson and Australian legend David Campese.
The airline is well known for its eye-catching safety briefings but its latest effort may be the strangest and most ambitious yet. It boasts Hollywood production values, CGI aliens, actor Rip Torn, a troop of dancers in Air New Zealand outfits and some fairly unsophisticated product placement by kit manufacturers Adidas.
The five-minute epic begins with New Zealand's two biggest stars, Richie McCaw and Dan Carter, entering MiB HQ. Coach Steve Hansen also makes an appearance as do forwards Kieran Read, Keven Mealamu and Sam Whitelock.
But the star of the show is full-back Israel Dagg, who proves that he is not easily embarrassed as he raps out the safety instructions with the help of Stan Walker, who won Australian Idol in 2009.
The pair perform a repurposed version of Will Smith's Men in Black theme tune. Dagg, who has 48 caps for the All Blacks and was part of the team that won the World Cup in 2011, delivers lines including: "Relax, let's go, let's get this started, but before this plane's departed, obey instructions from your crew - all lighted signs and placards too."
Other gems include: "The red tab inflates your lifejacket, but only pull it as you exit. For more inflation blow the mouthpiece. Infant lifejackets, crew have got these."
Despite the lyrics the video has won widespread approval from the antipodean media. News.com.au calls in "hilarious" and Stuff.co.nz describes it as an "out of this world new inflight safety video", while Twitter was also awash with praise for both the All Blacks and the airline's marketing department.
But not everyone was impressed. Irish radio station Newstalk called it "possibly the most embarrassing video" that the players will ever appear in.