Air NZ’s Middle Earth-inspired safety video

(image via


There is nothing so wonderful as when two of your favourite things in the world – no I am not talking about white chocolate and caramel although their culinary marriage is truly blessed by the gods and I can totally see how your mind went there first; mine always does – coming together to create something even more beguilingly impressive.

And to my almost uncontainable joy, it has happened again.

Air New Zealand, which is hands down the friendliest, most efficient airline in the world, and The Hobbit (both the book by Tolkien and the soon-to-be-released movie by one Peter Jackson) have joined together to create what is arguably the most imaginative safety video ever.


Thrilled that Air New Zealand is now flying to Middle Earth! (image via


It makes joyfully liberal use of hobbits and elves, and all manner of Middle Earth folk, even Gollum and the One Ring, which makes a passenger who looks uncannily like The Hobbit‘s director, get a look-in (yes, yes I know it’s him).

I am fairly confident that it will be one of the few safety videos, possibly the only one, to hold peoples’ attention throughout, a major feat unto itself since most people usually pay safety instructions the same sort of rapt attention given to drying paint and slow growth mould.

The quirky humour of “An Unexpected Briefing” perfectly encapsulates everything I love about Air New Zealand, and it’s no surprise that the video has gone viral even elliciting this rapt endorsement from Mark Lisanti writing at

“All American-owned airlines should cease operations immediately. The New Zealanders are now dominating us so thoroughly in the safety-video space that we may never catch up. And even if we try, you just know that Delta is going to charge extra for its red-eye Gollum attacks.

And yes, Peter Jackson shows up. Of course he does.”

I have to agree, and while I would have flown Air New Zealand on my next overseas trip anyway, this video is going to make all the sweeter to do so.

Well done everyone at Air New Zealand!


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