SI causes stir down under with racy airline safety video

Clearly, this isn't your mother's airline safety video. But your father may not have minded it.

First Barbie, now Christie Brinkley.

Seems like Sports Illustrated just can’t make anybody happy with its use of swimsuit models. OK . . . guys, fans of Barbie and a whole lot of air travelers in New Zealand are probably pretty stoked right now.

To commemorate the 50th anniversary of the magazine’s most famous annual edition, SI put the most famous doll in the world on some commemorative covers of this year’s swimsuit issue. And that move set off quite a firestorm of controversy.

And on Tuesday, a quintet of SI swimsuit models, led by Brinkley, appeared on monitors aboard Air New Zealand flights in the airline’s new "Safety In Paradise’ video, a steamy version of that video every flight plays before taking off to cover the flight’s safety rules.

Does it work? Why you don’t check it out below and tell us where you can find your life jacket.

The video, filmed on New Zealand’s famed Cook Islands, was also shot to commemorate the swimsuit edition’s 50th anniversary.


And like the Barbie cover, this video starring Jessica Gomes, Chrissy Teigen, Hannah Davis and Ariel Meredith alongside Brinkley, was met with controversy, especially when a behind-the-scenes sneak peak was released last week.

"My concern is that as a woman I get on a plane to go to a business meeting say — something serious — and I am confronted by women in bikinis in what are highly sexualised images. That jars," Dr. Deborah Russell, a lecturer and feminist commentator at New Zealand’s Massey University, told Fairfax Newspapers, according to The Telegraph. "I want to be taken seriously but it seems that suddenly they are saying that my sexuality is all that matters about me."

A spokesman for the airline told The Telegraph: "We have been careful to ensure ‘Safety in Paradise’ has been produced in a way that is tasteful. Naturally, given this safety video celebrates 50 years of [the] Sports Illustrated swimsuit [edition], it made sense to feature some of the magazine’s most well-known models."

Here is that behind-the-scenes teaser:

The official swimsuit cover will be revealed Thursday on "Jimmy Kimmel Live."