David Blaine is Going Down

Describing David Blaine as “the loony attention grabber,” Mitch Marconi of the Post Chronicle reports the daredevil’s newest stunt will have him under water for a week.

Image of David Blaine on Inside Magic“If you can believe this one, Blaine is planning to live underwater for a week in a human-sized aquarium outside of New York’s Lincoln Center.
“The loony attention grabber has in the past spent 61 hours in ice and 44 days fasting in a glass box suspended over London’s River Thames.
“This latest escapade will end after seven days and seven nights of underwater pananoramas with Blaine attempting to break the record for holding one’s breath underwater.
“To prepare for his newest stunt, Blaine reportedly trained with U.S. Navy Seals.”

ABC will televise the finale on May 8th.

Reality TV reports (or passes along an ABC Television Press Release) the name of this stunt will be DROWNED ALIVE – Seven Days Under Water At Lincoln Center.
The article does provide additional detail:

Blaine Will Attempt to Hold His Breath Underwater Longer Than Any Other Human Being, After Spending Seven Days Living in a Spectacular Human Aquarium in Full Public View David Blaine, known for his headline-making feats of physical, emotional and mental endurance, will once again put his life on the line in a death-defying attempt to hold his breath underwater longer than any human being, which is currently a stunning eight minutes, 58 seconds.
He will undertake this latest challenge after living with a life support system in a specially built human aquarium — an eight-foot acrylic sphere — for seven days and nights, in full public view in front of New York?s Lincoln Center.

But wait, that’s not all.

Additionally, viewers will be treated to amazing new jaw-dropping illusions, as Blaine performs his distinctive style of up-close-and-personal street magic in a variety of venues from a casino in Las Vegas to Angola State Prison in Angola, Louisiana, to a New York art gallery.
The two-hour special is Blaine’s spell-binding journey of mind, body and soul in preparation for his literally breathtaking feat.
He even trained with the U.S. Navy Seals, who put him through what Blaine described as “the most grueling physical training of [his] life.”
On the way to holding his breath underwater for the longest period of time ever, he would surpass the great Houdini, who managed a then-astonishing three-minute breath-hold.
This will be Blaine’s most interactive challenge, as passersby will be able to touch the aquarium, take photos with him and even communicate with him underwater from the time he enters the sphere on Monday, May 1, until he is leaves it live on his special.

So why this stunt and why this way?
The press release answers all:

This special will attempt to answer all previous doubters who have questioned whether Blaine has resorted to the use of body doubles, mirrors or other trickery in completing his past arduous challenges.
For the first time, viewers will be taken inside Blaine’s home, as his trainers and coaches put him through punishing physical and mental training, including a rigid diet, preparing him for this latest test of stamina.
He will demonstrate how he willed his body to defy physiological limits in his dogged pursuit of the eight-minute, fifty-eight second breath-hold barrier.
Pushing the limits of physical and emotional endurance, Blaine faces additional challenges in the tank before he attempts to hold his breath underwater for the longest time ever by a human, including hypothermia, blacking out, skin problems with his hands and feet and nerve damage.

Maybe it’s just us, but when you’re facing drowning on live television, the potential for “skin problems” doesn’t seem as spectacular a risk.  In fact, that would make our teenage years one of the longest “exhibitions of physical endurance and pain known to man.”

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