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Thu 19 Mar 2015 03:20 PM

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Etihad launches Fast & Furious 777 aircraft in Los Angeles

Abu Dhabi airline teams up with Universal Pictures to promote new Fast & Furious movie, some of which was filmed in UAE capital

Etihad launches Fast & Furious 777 aircraft in Los Angeles

Etihad Airways and Universal Pictures on Thursday unveiled a luxury Fast & Furious-branded 777 airliner at Los Angeles International Airport. 

Actor/producer Vin Diesel was on hand as Etihad Airways flight 171 arrived from Abu Dhabi to kick off the global junket and world premiere of Furious 7. The film arrives in theatres on April 3.

The Fast & Furious 777 will fly the direct route between Abu Dhabi and Los Angeles, which Etihad Airways opened in June 2014. The airline is also sponsor of the Furious 7 world premiere, which takes place in Los Angeles on April 1.

Abu Dhabi became a key location for the Furious 7 production.  Over the course of two weeks in April 2014, the team filmed in areas outside Abu Dhabi in the Liwa Desert, as well as in the city centre at such locations as the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, Emirates Palace hotel, the Yas Marina F1 race circuit and the Etihad Towers. 

Peter Baumgartner, chief commercial officer of Etihad Airways, said: “We are pleased to work together  with Universal, an organisation which shares that same spirit of innovation and reimagination when it comes to the world of entertainment, to unveil our newly-decaled Boeing 777 aircraft in support of the Fast & Furious franchise, and Furious 7 which premieres next month and highlights our airline’s home of Abu Dhabi.”

Neal H Moritz, who has shepherded all seven films in the series, added: “When we began filming The Fast and the Furious in 2000, if you told me that we would one day have our logo on a wide-body jet, I would have said you were crazy.

“We are so honoured that Etihad has partnered with us to support this very personal film, and we thank the people of the United Arab Emirates for all the kindness and graciousness they showed throughout production.”

The Fast & Furious decal will remain on the plane for the next four to six months.

Furious 7 is aiming to follow in the footsteps of the previous film, which was released in May 2013, and made $238,679,850 worldwide.

So far, the six previous Fast and Furious movies in the series have grossed $937.8 million worldwide.

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