EDS Airplane online

EDS, Electronic Data Systems, a global information technology company, launched ‘Airplane’ in 2000, a television commercial promoting its capacity to work with companies right from start up. The television campaign, launched at the Super Bowl, was a follow up to Cat Herders, and was in turn followed up with ‘Squirrels’.

First speaker in EDS Airplane ad

Flight construction crew speak to the camera, telling us why they love building a plane in the air…

“Some people like to climb mountains. I like to build planes. In the air.” “I grew up wanting to be on the wing. Wanting to be up this high.” “Sometimes the temperature at this altitude will reach 60 below. It’s brisk. It’s refreshing.” “You never know what you’re going to come across up here. Canadian geese. Mallards. Owls.” “These people back here. That’s why I come to work. That’s why I build airplanes in the sky.”

Woman talks about building a dream in EDS Airplane ad

“We’re not just building a plane here. We’re building a dream!” “I love this job.”

Construction worker talks about the thanks he gets from the look of a kid

“We don’t get a lot of thanks up here. But when I look over there and see that little kid, the look in his eyes, that’s all the thanks I need.” The super: “In a sense this is what we do. We build your digital business even while you’re up and running.” The voiceover: “EDS. Managing the complexities of the digital economy”.


The EDS Airplane campaign was developed at Fallon, Minneapolis, by creative director David Lubars, copywriter Greg Hahn, art director Dean Hanson, agency producer Marty Wetherall, account supervisor Rob Buchner, working with EDS marketing director LaWanda Burrell.

Filming was directed by John O’Hagan via Hungry Man, now with RSA Films, with producer Bob Wendt and director of photography Roberto Schaefer.

Skydiving cinematography was done by Joe Jennings in 35 mm with video assist. See Aerial Stuntman for the background on stuntwork.

Editing was done at Sight Effects.

Coffee is poured in the brisk breeze of an EDS construction

EDS Airplane Online

EDS at one point hosted a 10 mb quicktime version of Airplane on their site, but removed it as new advertising took its place. They have had a policy of asking for the removal of copies of EDS Airplane at Google Video and YouTube. I’m wondering if the company want to disassociate themselves from the entrepreneurial nature of the Airplane, Squirrels and Cat Herders ads. Perhaps there are other issues surrounding permission from actors.

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