Virgin America, the upscale, low-fare airline known for shaking up the status quo, is teaming up with the Dallas International Film Festival (DIFF) for the big screen premiere of the airline’s critically-acclaimed “BLAH AIRLINES FLIGHT 101,” a five hour and forty-five minute film set on board a BLAH Airlines flight – the boring, beige and dull antithesis of the innovative and stylish experience when flying Virgin America. The film, which will be screened on April 10 as part of the official DIFF Festival Line-Up, is a surrealistic and humorous work of cinema vérité that exposes the grim reality of commercial air travel – characterized by cramped seats, harsh lighting and a lack of entertainment and meal options. A film that AdWeek called "brilliant" and "warholian," BLAH AIRLINES FLIGHT 101, has garnered nearly one million views on YouTube to date. The film’s trailer can be viewed here.
In partnership with DIFF, the airline is inviting local flyers, Elevate frequent flyer program members and social followers to join the screening of BLAH AIRLINES FLIGHT 101 – and follow the hashtag, #ExitBlah and enter the moodlight for a chance to score a seat at the premiere]. Any festival-goer who makes it through the entire 5 hour and 45 minute film screening will score 2500* Elevate points – or the equivalent of a reward flight – so they can avoid flying “blah” on their next trip. The airline has also launched a social media contest where lucky winners from San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Washington, D.C. and Dallas will score a trip on Virgin America and invitation to the BLAH screening – in addition to other film and party access at the festival and two-night hotel stay at the luxurious The Highland Dallas hotel. For full details, click here.
“With an expanded presence in Dallas and unmatched entertainment experience onboard our flights, we’re excited to be the Official Domestic Airline Partner of the Dallas International Film Festival and to support the broader film community,” said Virgin America’s Chief Marketing Officer, Luanne Calvert. “We’re thrilled to partner with DIFF to host a fun premiere for our friends and partners here in Dallas. We’re also excited to see who makes it through the entire screening of “BLAH AIRLINES ,” which at a 5 hours and 45 minutes running time – begs the question, if you wouldn’t sit through the entire film, why would you pay money to experience it in real-life on a flight?”
With an award-winning experience and low fares, Virgin America aims to be the antidote to the typical "blah" airline experience. Virgin America is currently running a digital campaign inviting flyers on its new Dallas Love Field routes to ‘raise their expectations’ by demanding not just the lowest possible fares, but an innovative, fresh travel experience tailored to the longer-haul flying now possible from the airport most convenient to downtown Dallas. Virgin Group Founder, Sir Richard Branson kicked off the airline’s ‘Higher Expectations’ campaign with a cheeky video that highlights the airline’s high amenities and low fare guarantee, which is now live at WeInventedHigherExpectations.com. Visitors to the site can also score triple Elevate points** on flight from Dallas Love Field (DAL) simply by sharing the same ‘higher expectations’ with family and friends and inviting them to join the airline’s Elevate loyalty program, who will also score triple points next time they book with Virgin America.
The overall campaign is designed to showcase the airline’s award-winning travel experience and its low-fare competitiveness – including its current Low Fare Love Match price guarantee in Dallas (the carrier will match any comparable nonstop Main Cabin fares to or from DAL to DCA, LGA, AUS, SFO or LAX***). Virgin America is the only carrier to offer three classes of service with both an award-winning First Class cabin and a Main Cabin Select premium economy service on every flight it operates from Love Field to DAL, DCA, LGA, AUS, SFO and LAX.
The “BLAH AIRLINES” filmmakers will also be speaking at the “Cinema as Next Level Marketing” panel on April 12 that will focus on cinematic campaigns that blend art, cinematography and marketing to create innovative teaser films and advertisements. “BLAH AIRLINES” was created with SF creative shop, Eleven.
“We’re thrilled to welcome Virgin America to the Festival this year with their BLAH Airlines big screen premiere,” said James Faust, artistic director of the Dallas Film Society. “Our mission is always to give recognition to cinematic innovation and Virgin America’s avant-garde BLAH AIRLINES film is something fresh and experimental that we haven’t seen before.”
Virgin America will also offer select films from the Dallas International Film Festival this summer on its Red® in-flight entertainment platform. Virgin America’s entertainment content is refreshed regularly and its new movie menu ranges from foreign-language films to Hollywood blockbusters. The airline’s entertainment menu spotlights independent content across mediums – from film, to television and new media. The Red platform already offers every Virgin America guest a touch-screen entertainment center at their seatback – with 24 television channels including 18 channels of live television, more than 25 on-demand films, a 3,000 song library, videogames, music videos and more.
Virgin America launched service at Dallas Love Field (DAL) on October 13 2014 – and now offers flights to New York, Washington, D.C., San Francisco and Los Angeles – making DAL the airline’s third-largest operation. On April 27 2015, the airline will launch five daily flights between Dallas Love Field and Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS).
The airline is unique for its fleet of beautifully-designed, new aircraft and a consistent product experience available on every flight, which includes: fleetwide WiFi, power outlets at every seat, a full-service, on-demand food and cocktail menu, confirmed seating and personal, touch-screen seatback entertainment. Virgin America also offers Dallas Love Field travelers a check-in lounge that mirrors the sleek look and feel of the carrier’s aircraft cabins and is the only dedicated First Class check-in area of its kind at Love Field. The airline has been named the “Best Domestic Airline” in Condé Nast Traveler's Readers' Choice Awards and in Travel + Leisure'sWorld's Best Awards for the past seven consecutive years along with Travel + Leisure’s “Best Domestic Airline for Food” in 2014.
The airline continues to expand its network across the country with flights to Austin, Boston, Cancun, Chicago, Dallas Love Field, Fort Lauderdale, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Los Cabos, Newark, New York (JFK and LGA), Orlando, Palm Springs (seasonal), Portland, Puerto Vallarta, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington D.C. (IAD and DCA).