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Richard Simmons urges Air New Zealand flyers to put their tables in the upright position [VIDEO]

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A couple of years ago, Air New Zealand scored a viral hit with a flight safety video in which actual ANZ crew went in front of the camera wearing nothing but body paint. “The bare essentials of safety,” they called it. The video now has more than six million YouTube views.

How do you top that? ANZ offered its answer a few days ago — a safety video designed to look like a Richard Simmons exercise tape and sprinkled with Kiwi celebrities.

The effervescent Mr. Simmons lets us know early on that the theme is “Fit to Fly!” Woo! Shake it out and breathe deep, baby!

“Fit to Fly” was one of YouTube’s most-viewed on 27 March, the day it was unveiled.

Celebrity cameos include “Amazing Race” host Phil Keoghan, Air New Zealand CEO Rob Fyfe (one of the background dancers), netball star Temepara George and — most fascinatingly — broadcaster Paul Henry. Last October, Henry was sacked by TVNZ after controversial remarks about New Zealand Governor-General Anand Satyanand. And in 2009, he got into hot water for referring to gays as “unnatural” — a comment that makes his moment with Simmons in the video even more, um, poignant.

There’s also a behind-the-scenes video that’s worth a look.

So, buckle up and sweat it out, you air commuters. You’re looking great!

“Fit to Fly” with Richard Simmons

Bare essentials of flight safety

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