Friday, March 4, 2016

ANA announces unveiling, first flight of BB-8 Star Wars jetliner

Final jet in Star Wars livery


Japan’s All Nippon Airways (ANA) has set the dates for the roll-out and inaugural flight of the last of its Star Wars-themed jetliners.

Part of the ANA Star Wars Project announced in April 2015, the Boeing (NYSE:BA) 777-300ER will be decorated with a special livery featuring the new character BB-8, which debuted in the movie Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

The jet will debut at Osaka International Airport (ITM) on March 27, then make a one-time flight to Tokyo’s Haneda Airport (HND) before departing on its first international flight to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) just after midnight March 29.

Following the HND-LAX flight, the aircraft will then operate on various international routes, though principally routes linking HND and Tokyo’s Narita Airport (NRT) with the U.S. airports of LAX, New York’s John F. Kennedy International (JFK), Chicago’s O’Hare International (ORD), Washington, D.C.’s Dulles International (IAD) and Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH).

The interior of the aircraft will also sport a BB-8 theme. Passengers will experience the world of Star Wars with specially-designed BB-8 paper cups and headrest covers and cabin attendants will wear BB-8 aprons. On the R2-D2 ANA Dreamliner, which debuted at Boeing’s plant in Everett, Wash., on Sept. 12, 2015, cabin attendants wear R2-D2 aprons.



The R2-D2 Dreamliner is in service on international routes. The second plane in the series, the ANA Star Wars jet with a livery depicting both R2-D2 and BB-8, is a Boeing 767-300 and entered service Nov. 22, 2015 on domestic routes within Japan.

The themed jets are part of a five year promotional contract with Disney for the Star Wars brand.

Fans of the franchise have the opportunity to win prizes including a round trip for two departing LAX on the first outbound flight of the BB-8 ANA Jet. Fifty other winners will receive special BB-8 ANA Jet model planes. Entry details are available at https://www.ana-sw.com/news/.

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Video by Carl Dombek
Artists' renderings used by permission
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