Anyone near downtown Los Angeles on the evening of Wednesday, March 20th, may have just thought the Earth was in a bit more danger than we're generally comfortable with. Countless people looked up that night to see what appeared to be a meteor falling from the sky into the greater LA area, and many captured video of the event.
What is this flying item on fire above downtown Los Angeles? https://t.co/3tUu0jKL8L— dennis hegstad (@dennis hegstad)1553135393.0
On social media, LA residents looked to each other for confirmation that they weren't crazy!
Did anyone else see that meteor over Downtown Los Angeles?? #crazy— Ellis (@Ellis)1553135441.0
@elliseckles Omg yes! I saw something just moments ago! Is that what it was ☄️ huge! In the eastern sky near #dtla #LAMeteor— DeuceKat (@DeuceKat)1553136926.0
Saw a meteor burn through the sky of LA today. ☄️— WILL (@WILL)1553142050.0
It quickly became clear SOMETHING had flown over LA, leaving a fiery trail in its wake.
#la #meteor #dtla #weirdshit meteor by dtla. https://t.co/PdbXcUzVwC— C (@C)1553135725.0
Whoa! Just saw a meteor over LA. @ClydeLewis I could not snap a picture but it was EPIC! Hope someone got a good shot of it.— COVFEFE THE LION (@COVFEFE THE LION)1553135365.0
Literally saw a meteor by DTLA. Did a whole ass 180. It was going right then left. Spooky shit. #la #meteor #someweirdshit— C (@C)1553135494.0
One Twitter user saw the meteor being circled by helicopters after its fall.
Did anyone else see a meteor fly over downtown LA and the six helicopters surrounding it currently?! Y’all peepin t… https://t.co/TnQvOJTJYV— Lucas Roth (@Lucas Roth)1553136086.0
WAS THAT A METEOR, DTLA?! Caught this from my balcony— it burned out right behind the Intercontinental! https://t.co/BtbvbwzcVV— Celeste M. Perez (@Celeste M. Perez)1553135810.0
Apparently quite the meteor show over LA tonight! Looks like it skimmed through the upper atmosphere but I'm guessi… https://t.co/KzLsy2SMrD— Phil Plait (@Phil Plait)1553137350.0
Some people online believed the meteor may have extraterrestrial origins.
@dennishegstad BOW BEFORE ZOD— Dent In The World (@Dent In The World)1553137888.0
@dennishegstad @harrysloan4 @Alec_Sanchez14 @zaidseleem https://t.co/m8FCbd5nMY— Jon (@Jon)1553146957.0
@dennishegstad @ComfortablySmug https://t.co/BktFxmHfXf— JFH (@JFH)1553138489.0
In truth, the fiery comet was a lot less exciting than it looked: what appeared to be a meteor was actually men in wing suits holding a flare.
I'm hearing now they were wing suit divers with flares. That makes more sense. The slow speed bugged me, especiall… https://t.co/Yrdj62O6oQ— Phil Plait (@Phil Plait)1553141993.0
It turns out the "meteor" was just a practical effect for a commercial shoot, which is not uncommon in Hollywood.
PSA: A meteor did not crash into Downtown Los Angeles, and no, it's not an alien invasion...just a film shoot. This… https://t.co/C2SZ6faodY— LAPD HQ (@LAPD HQ)1553138336.0
Some Twitter users were a bit skeptical of this explanation...
@LAPDHQ Somewhere on an LA rooftop bar https://t.co/JhlXAapGz2— Diana Romo (@Diana Romo)1553144103.0
@LAPDHQ Uhh... I'm pretty sure meteors are added in post-production...— SKG* (@SKG*)1553138856.0
@LAPDHQ https://t.co/bXpvmR2uB7— Anchorage Police Department (@Anchorage Police Department)1553139744.0
...but video evidence seems to back up the police's official report.
@dennishegstad Red Bull Air Force https://t.co/jVtFZldJ5p— Jeremiah Davis (@Jeremiah Davis)1553135935.0
Still, many will never forget the day a meteor almost crashed into downtown LA. Watch for scenes inspired by the real-world event in disaster movies premiering next year.
#Breaking: Wingsuit jumpers spotted falling over in #California in the #US with sparks, sparked reactions over soci… https://t.co/5MLzsfBgla— Sotiri Dimpinoudis (@Sotiri Dimpinoudis)1553137846.0