David Blaine has never been one to shy away from a challenge, and his latest extreme stunt has seen him once again prove the nay-sayers wrong.
David Blaine Ascension sees the 47-year-old lifted into the air by balloons – one of which was reportedly an experimental aircraft – in a move reminiscent of Pixar’s Up.
Originally planning to perform the move above New York City, it was moved to Arizona for logistical issues.
At 8am PT (Pacific Time) on Wednesday, David began his ascent, and was 19,000 feet up within 40 minutes.
He spoke with daughter Dessa as he was raised up above Arizona by the 52 balloons, as he released weights from his body as he ascended to aid in the climb.
He raised the stakes even higher by attaching his parachute to his body during the climb, before employing a breathing technique to make sure his oxygen levels remained steady.
At 24,900 feet up in the air, David released the balloons and fell back to earth.
In a clip of the incredible feat, a camera attached to the balloons sees David release himself, before it cuts to another showing him plummeting toward the ground.
In tense scenes, viewers can see David eventually release his parachute, before making it safely back to the ground.
YouTube – who funded and produced the stunt – tweeted a clip of his landing.
“We’re so proud! #DavidBlaineAscension,” the video site remarked.
“I’m going to provide my point of view through the whole thing,” he recently told Variety.
“Throughout his 20-plus year career,” a spokesperson for YouTube said, “David Blaine has consistently redefined magic and illusion by focusing on audiences’ experience first and foremost.”
To diehard fans of the daredevil performer, the severity of his latest stunt may not come as a great surprise.
David’s become renowned for taking things to the next level, his performances getting more and more daring each time.
One stunt, performed three years ago, entailed David catching a bullet.
He was to pull a string to fire a rifle, with the bullet caught by a metal cup in his mouth.
But the cup had slipped from its intended spot, and David ended up shooting himself in the throat.
David was rushed to hospital, but seemed unfazed, despite friends and colleagues vowing never to attempt the stunt again.