Daredevil Nik Wallenda's Unprecedented Niagara Falls Tightrope Walk to Air Live on ABC, Friday June 15

Categories: Network TV Press Releases

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June 13th, 2012

via press release:

“Countdown to Niagara: The Greatest Megastunts of All Time” Airs 8:00-9:00 p.m., ET

“Megastunts: Highwire Over Niagara Falls – Live!” Airs 9:00-11:00 p.m., ET



On June 15, Nik Wallenda will walk approximately 1,550 feet on a tightrope wire, suspended 173 feet above the raging waters of Niagara Falls -- an unprecedented feat that has been banned for over 125 years. ABC will air Wallenda’s long-planned stunt live. The “Megastunts” ABC special will be part of a two-part, three-hour event that will include an hour devoted to the greatest stunts in history and culminate in Wallenda’s walk. Anchored by Josh Elliott and ESPN’s Hannah Storm, and featuring reporting from Elliott, Storm, Bill Weir and Sam Champion, “Countdown to Niagara: The Greatest Megastunts of All Time” (8:00-9:00 p.m., ET) and “Megastunts: Highwire Over Niagara Falls – Live!” (9:00-11:00 p.m., ET) air FRIDAY, JUNE 15 on the ABC Television Network.


Wallenda’s tightrope walk over Horseshoe Falls, the biggest of the three falls that make up Niagara Falls, is unprecedented and will be a culmination of a life's work for Wallenda, 33, and his entire daredevil family. "It's very exciting. This is something I've wanted to do for a long time," says Wallenda, a seventh-generation member of the legendary Great Wallendas, a travelling family circus troupe dating back to 1780. "It's been a dream I've had since I was six years old when I first visited the falls with my parents. I remember looking across... and thinking, it would be cool to be the first person in the world to do this."


Crossing the Niagara River on a tightrope has been banned since 1890. Thirteen tightrope artists have traversed the gorge throughout history, notably the Great Blondin, but Wallenda discovered in his research that no tightrope artist had ever before walked directly over the awesome and raging cascades.

John Green and Ethan Nelson are the co-executive producers and Morgan Zalkin is the senior producer.

  • Eric Z

    I’ve been to large events in other cities, but the Buffalo/Falls region will not be able to police the large crowd coming to NF for this. I work two blocks away and have to be at work before 11pm that night and it is gonna be a straight up nightmare. As for the show, it seems like a ton of buildup for a 15 minute walk, similar to the last episode of Idol that is basically in love with itself before the final announcement.

  • don

    the walk doesnt start till 1015 pm and its a 2 hour show sounds boring and i am not going to watch

  • Joseph

    I have heard that the actual tightrope walk will be shown on a seven-or-so-second tape delay and that if Nik Wallenda falls to his death, the broadcast would be cut off.

  • Joseph

    I meant to say that if Wallenda falls, the broadcast would be cut off so viewers would not see him falling.

  • mArS

    That it definitely a good idea

  • don

    he will have a safe rope so he wont die

  • Julie

    Yeah apparently ABC made it a condition of the contract that he wear a safety harness or something similar – which has not made Wallenda happy. He’s pointed out that it could do more harm than good, as he never uses one and it may interfere with him both physically and pyschologically. Although, I presume he’s been wearing it during his recent practises, to get used to it.

  • Gary Middleton

    It’s funny how they’re all pretending a harnessed walk is still death-defying.

    What difference does it make that he’s walking over “raging cascades”? He could be walking over anything, he’s tethered.

  • Don Draper

    Gary, you can’t walk down your driveway without being scared.

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