To celebrate the release of director Clint Eastwood’s Sully: Miracle on the Hudson released this Friday 2nd December, Richard Brownnutt and I headed off to Virtual Aviation just south of Gatwick Airport to attempt to do the impossible….. sort of!
We were invited by Warner Bros. to this state of the art facility to try our hand at flying the same aeroplane that Chesley ‘Sully’ Sullenberger (played by Tom Hanks in the movie) flew in his famous water landing on the Hudson river in New York City.
On January 15th 2009 after a duel engine failure following a take-off from LaGuardia Airport, the veteran captain and his co-pilot Jeff Skiles (played by Aaron Eckhart) had to make decisions that could either save or more likely kill all those aboard his Airbus A320. Never before had there been a successful water landing in a commercial airliner and no one knew that fact better than Chesley ‘Sully’ Sullenberger.
After discussing numerous options with his control tower and realising there was no runway that they could reach safely, Sully makes the decision to land on the River Hudson. Astonishingly the landing was indeed successful and within seven minutes, the New York Harbour Master, the US Coastguard and a number of other vessels were on site rescuing the 155 passengers and their crew from the wings of the aircraft as it floated in the Hudson.
Tom Hanks Premiere Interview
The film continues to take us through the proceedings that happened after the landing and looks deeply into whether or not the man that the world deemed a hero was actually right to ditch the $60m plane.
Sully hits UK cinemas this Friday 2nd December and you can see our review of the movie here. Sully is a film that shows a hero in the truest sense of the word.
Captain Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger Premiere Interview
Check out what happened when we took to the skies in the simulator – i think it’s fair to say we didn’t really have much of an idea of what we were doing but thanks to Alan for being so patient with us!
Reckon you’d make a great pilot? Click this way for the ‘Sully aptitude test’!
Flight Simulator Fun
Aaron Eckhart Premiere Interview