Air New Zealand
By Elizabeth Barber
October 23, 2014

Air New Zealand would like to welcome you to Middle-earth with what it very justly calls: The Most Epic Safety Video Ever Made.

A new flight-safety video from Air New Zealand — the “official airline of Middle-earth,” as the company puts it — heralds the upcoming release of the latest Hobbit movie with an elfin stewardess, an orc in an oxygen masks, and Elijah Wood, Peter Jackson and Richard Taylor as airline passengers.

In the four-minute video, two Hobbit superfans board an Air New Zealand flight and are flabbergasted to find that Wood, a.k.a. Frodo, is seated across the aisle. The surprise continues as an elfin stewardess opens the safety video in Middle-earth — that is, New Zealand.

The clip is a romp through the Tolkien universe: a giant helps Jackson put on his oxygen mask; a wizard astride an eagle explains the crash position; an elf presents a tiny life jacket for children or hobbits. And Wood, safely in the Shire, concludes the clip with warm wishes: “May your path always be guided by the light of the stars and may the future bestow upon you all the happiness and adventure our Middle Earth has to offer.”

The video is a follow-up the airline’s 2012 Middle Earth-themed video, An Unexpected Briefing. That golden-hued clip, in which the plane is full of well-armed but chummy Tolkien characters, has almost 12 million views on YouTube.

The third and last film in the Hobbit trilogy, The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies, opens in December.

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