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Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it's David Blaine!

The American illusionist took to the skies on Wednesday by hanging onto about 50 helium-filled balloons for his latest stunt called Ascension.

NDTV reports that the daredevil gently lifted off from a desert air strip in Arizona, and gradually dropped small weights to speed his ascent. At a certain level he put an oxygen mask on his face to ensure that he will still be able to breathe.

CNN reports that even though he only planned on reaching just over five kilometres up in the air, Blaine eventually reached the point of 7.5 kilometres above ground – the same level usually reached by commercial airplanes.

He landed safely on the ground thanks to a parachute that he put on mid-flight, and he could be heard shouting "Wow! That was awesome!".

The stunt was livestreamed by YouTube, and it set a new record as the most watched YouTube Originals live event ever. The stunt lasted 30 minutes and was watched by more than 770,000 viewers.

In a preview for the stunt, Blane can be seen showing his nine-year-old daughter, Dessa, with former partner, French actress Alizee Guinochet, around the airport where he was planning to descent from.

Blaine is known for his street magic TV series, and extreme stunts like standing on top of a very thin pillar in New York for 35 hours straight.

Watch the YouTube Originals video below to see how the Ascension stunt happened.

Image credits: Variety and ABC7

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