For our latest mission, we surprised people in a hotel elevator by putting them in the middle of a marathon. Over the course of the ride down, two different marathon runners board the elevator and surround a random person. The doors open on the lobby level to reveal a finish line and a crowd of 50 people cheering on the runners. Will the random stranger win the race?
Enjoy the video first and then go behind the scenes with our mission report and photos.
I don’t know how we’ve gone 15 years without doing an elevator prank. Dating back to Candid Camera, elevator pranks are a staple of the hidden camera genre. The hotel we staged this in has a staggering 47 floor atrium.
We set up our finish line on the bottom floor and situated it in a way so random people exiting the elevator would have no choice but to cross the line.
We staged this mission in Atlanta. We put out a call on Facebook looking for Atlanta participants, and about 50 people came out to play cheering fans no the sidelines.
The mission started on the 47th (top) floor. We waited for a random hotel guest to board the elevator. We were able to control the movement of the elevator to make sure it only stopped on the floors we wanted it to. On the 46th floor the doors opened, and our first runner, Agent Alan “Ace$Thugg” Corey, entered dressed like a marathon runner. Alan started doing Improv Everywhere missions way back in 2002 and has been a big part of countless classics like our Best Buy Uniform Prank and No Shirts prank in Abercrombie.
At the 45th floor, Agent Erin Elizabeth Burns entered, also in marathon gear. The random person found herself in the middle of two runners, both running in place and sweating.
45 floors later, the elevator landed on the lower level and the doors opened to reveal a crowd of people cheering, along with a race official pointing the runners towards the finish line around the corner.
The random woman was very confused, but eventually made her way out the elevator and towards the finish line, smiling.
Agent Corey tripped and fell and Agent Burns developed a cramp, creating an opportunity for the random woman to win the race!
She ducked under the finish line tape rather than breaking it.
Agent Kate Lord interviewed the winner, who was given a water bottle and a thermal blanket.
We staged the mission several times throughout the day and had a fun variety of reactions. The guy above was the most confused. He hilariously backed into the finish line tape.
Another random winner with his medal.
Flowers were presented to all.
Thanks to all of the participants for coming out to be a part of it! We’ll have another elevator-themed video up later this spring! Join our email list and stay tuned.
Created and Directed by: Charlie Todd
Produced by: Charlie Todd, Stefan Glidden, Andrea Cox, Brennon Edwards
Director of Photography: Stefan Glidden
Camera Operators: Stefan Glidden, Eric Kays, Brittin Richter
Production Designer: Brittin Richter
Art PA: Lindsay Butt
Sound: Booker Edwards
Prod Coordinator: Fran Burst
1st AD: Suzan Satterfield
2nd AD: Peyton Maxey
Still Photography: Charlie Todd
Production Assistant: Jil Pasiecnik, Joanna Pasiecnik
Editor: Stefan Glidden
DIT: Carey Williams
Music: Tyler Walker
Starring: Alan Corey (Runner #1), Erin Elizabeth Burns (Runner #2), Kate Lord (Sportscaster)