Air Date: Monday, May 08, 2006
Time Slot: 8:00 PM-10:00 PM EST on ABC
[NOTE: The following article is a press release issued by the aforementioned network and/or company. Any errors, typos, etc. are attributed to the original author. The release is reproduced solely for the dissemination of the enclosed information.]



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. Viewers will hold their collective breath during the heart-stopping finale of the broadcast when Blaine will put himself to the ultimate test � live � on a new, two-hour ABC primetime special, �David Blaine: Drowned Alive,� MONDAY, MAY 8 (8:00-10:00 p.m., ET), on the ABC Television Network.

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.

Blaine, 33, has been training for this most difficult challenge with a world class elite free-diving team led by internationally renowned trainer Kirk Krack. Other members of Blaine�s team are Martin Stepanek and Mandy-Rae Cruickshank, both multiple free-dive world record holders. Free-diving or breath-hold diving is a competitive water sport without any underwater breathing apparatus.

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. He will need to acclimatize himself in the sphere, regulating his breathing, sleeping at regular intervals and maintaining his hydration levels, if he is to be successful. He will be receiving liquid nutrition through a tube and the water will be kept at a balanced temperature in an effort to keep his core temperature as close to F98.6 degrees as possible. The longer Blaine stays underwater, the more body heat he will lose, his core temperature will drop and the more oxygen he will use, making the challenge much more grueling.

Blaine�s last mesmerizing challenge was successfully completing a 44-day fast in an acrylic box suspended over the Thames River in London in the fall of 2003, surviving only on water. However American viewers have been following his exploits for years on ABC Television. On �David Blaine: Vertigo,� he balanced on a platform, 22 inches in diameter, atop a 90-foot pillar in Manhattan�s Bryant Park in May of 2002 for 35 hours. In November 2000, Blaine�s �Frozen in Time� challenge drew massive crowds in Times Square, as he successfully survived inside a block of ice for over 61 hours. In April 1999, his seven-day �Buried Alive� event stunned new fans around the country. The country was initially introduced to Blaine�s amazing brand of incredible effects on his first ABC special, �David Blaine: Street Magic,� which aired in May 1997.

Shelley Ross is the executive producer of �David Blaine: Drowned Alive.� Roger Goodman is director of the live challenge coverage. �David Blaine: Drowned Alive� is a production of Stacked LLC. (CLOSED-CAPTIONED)

�David Blaine: Drowned Alive� is broadcast in 720 Progressive (720P), ABC�s selected HDTV format, with 5.1-channel surround sound. A TV parental guideline will be assigned closer to the airdate.

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