Jumping out of an airplane takes guts of steel. Now think about jumping out of an airplane while sitting on a couch surrounded with all the accouterments of a regular living room: a lamp, a decorative throw pillow, magazines, a gaming controller, a television, a streaming video device and a coffee table.
Noted daredevil and professional stunt man Jeff Provenzano was the willing guinea pig for just such a dramatic event. The stunt is designed to promote Nvidia published a video of the skydive Monday., a multifunction device for streaming video and gaming.
Provenzano sits on a white couch, straps on a helmet and then slides backward out of the belly of an airplane. He chills out on the sofa as the TV continues to function. He watches a video and plays a racing game and then Street Fighter while the wind whistles. He unstraps himself to ensure a safe landing. The living room set doesn't fare as well, ending up in a mashed pile on the desert floor below.
While this could be a clever and painstaking application of some particularly good CGI, the skydive looks convincing. Provenzano took to his Facebook page to say, "This is by far my favorite commercial I have ever been involved in. From the stunts to the final product."
There's a cat shown wearing a safety harness at the beginning of the video, but there's no evidence of any felines in the actual 10,000-foot (3,048-meter) freefall. The tabby does reappear at the very end, so at least part of the publicity stunt is fictional. There's a "no animals were harmed" note at the conclusion of the video, along with a warning not to attempt the stunt. As if you could get together a transport plane, a television that works in the sky and an entire living room on a platform.
A curious Twitter user asked the official Nvidia Shield account if Provenzano was really playing video games during the skydive. The answer came back as a "yes." As far as marketing stunts go, it's a good one. There's action, adventure and a dramatic ending. And a cat. Most importantly, it has a cat.