Billionaire airline and cell phone mogul Richard Branson on Sunday made good on a bet he lost in 2010, donning full drag, including fake eyelashes and bright red lipstick, and served customers on a very special AirAsia X flight from Perth to Kuala Lumpur.
Proceeds from tickets sold for the flight went to the Australia-based Starlight Children’s Foundation, which supports the families of seriously ill children. Branson, meanwhile, yucked it up as much as possible by making in-flight announcements, serving food and beverages and generally being goofy.
He also spilled a tray of orange juices in the lap of AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes, who he’s good friends with. Fernandes promptly “fired” his friend.
Branson embarked on the silly stunt after losing a bet to Fernandes in 2010, when he said Virgin’s Formula 1 team would win that year’s Grand Prix in Abu Dhabi.
“This has been a real first for me but I have enjoyed the experience and I have nothing but respect for what our fabulous flight attendants do every day to keep us safe,” Branson told reporters after disembarking.
This video is from CNN, aired Monday, May 13, 2013.
Stephen C. Webster
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
Raw Story is a progressive news site that focuses on stories often ignored in the mainstream media. While giving coverage to the big stories of the day, we also bring our readers' attention to policy, politics, legal and human rights stories that get ignored in an infotainment culture driven solely by pageviews.
Founded in 2004, Raw Story reaches 9 million unique readers per month and serves more than 30 million pageviews.