The Build Series Presents David Blaine Discussing His New Special "David Blaine: Beyond Magic"

He’s Alive!

David Blaine performed a live stunt in nearly a decade and ascended to the skies with helium balloons

It’s the first live stunt the magician has done in nearly a decade

David Blaine isn‘t an ordinary magician, along with his amazing card tricks and illusions he’s anchored himself as one of the best endurance stunt performers in history. From being buried alive, frozen alive, electrocuted, shot at, and holding his breath for 17 minutes, it’s hard to imagine something that he wouldn’t try. It’s been nearly a decade since Blaine has performed a live stunt but Wednesday morning he successfully performed a dangerous aerial ascent with helium balloons. So what was the stunt? In Blaine’s words, “So I’m going to take a bunch of balloons, I’m going to ride them as high as possible until I almost disappear in the sky and the idea is to jump down and land safely.”

YouTube Originals: "David Blaine Ascension"©GettyImages

Blaine names all of his crazy stunts and his aerial trick was called Ascension. He flew over the Arizona desert using around 50 helium-filled balloons and had to lose 25 pounds for it to work. He started his ascent Wednesday morning and within 40 minutes had risen to a height of over 19,000 feet. At around 15,000 feet he stopped to briefly speak with his daughter Dessa. He then eventually reached 24,900 feet. Blaine streamed the entire stunt on his YouTube including the events leading up to it. He even performed card tricks before his fateful jump. The video is now #1 trending on YouTube with over 4 million views and counting. The entire ordeal was frightening with Blaine speeding up the process saying, “The balloons are heating up let’s go.” His daughter nervously asks him twice if, “it is okay if they’re heating up.” His daughter tied on the final balloon and gave her daddy a kiss before he assured her “I’ll see you soon.”

YouTube Originals: “David Blaine Ascension”©GettyImages

His ascend was terrifying with both audio and visuals being streamed for the viewers. Blaine’s O2 levels began to drop and he had to do breathing techniques to maintain safe oxygen levels. The temperature began to drop as he rose and it was 15 degrees once he reached 21 thousand feet. Blaine kept an eye out for a proper place to land before he loosened up his leg straps, took in his last breaths of oxygen, and let go of his balloons for a terrifying never-ending free fall before releasing his parachute. Blaine wasn’t out of danger yet though, he had to pick a nice spot to land the parachute which meant avoiding power lines. After some stressful back and forth between him and his team, Blaine made a successful landing and his daughter greeted him via audio to tell him he did great. Blaine told his proud daughter, “This was all for you.” Blaine made it safely to the helicopter and laughed and smiled and repeated to himself, “That was amazing.” You can watch the entire stream below. Forward to 2:00:00 to watch him ascend to the skies.