Diplo's Plane Door Opens En Route to Texas, Plus More Celebs Who've Shared Their Scary Plane Stories

From exploding engines to crash landings, these celebrities survived close calls while flying

01 of 19

Miley Cyrus

Miley Cyrus
Steve Granitz/FilmMagic

In the early hours of March 23, 2022, Cyrus, who was en route to Paraguay to headline the Asunciónico festival in the country's capital, announced that her plane was "caught in a major unexpected storm."

"To my fans and everyone worried after hearing about my flight to Asunción. Our plane was caught in a major unexpected storm and struck by lighting. My crew, band, friends and family who were all traveling with me are safe after an emergency landing," Cyrus shared on Instagram alongside a terrifying video and a photo of her damaged plane.

"We were unfortunately unable to fly into Paraguay. I LOVE YOU," Cyrus concluded her message.

Asunción was hit with massive flooding the day prior. The official Twitter account for the music festival announced that the extreme weather conditions forced organizers to cancel the first day of the event.

02 of 19

Jennifer Lawrence

Jennifer Lawrence
Neilson Barnard/Getty

Lawrence feared for her life during a terrifying plane ride in 2017.

In Vanity Fair's December 2021 cover story, the Oscar-winning actress recalled taking a private plane from her native Kentucky bound for New York City in the summer of 2017, when the plane had to make an emergency landing in Buffalo.

"My skeleton was all that was left in the seat," Lawrence told Vanity Fair.

One of the plane's two engines had failed, so the emergency landing had to be made with just one, according to VF.

"We were all just going to die," recounted Lawrence. "I started leaving little mental voicemails to my family, you know, 'I've had a great life, I'm sorry.'"

She continued, "I just felt guilty. Everybody was going to be so bummed. And, oh, God, Pippi [her dog] was on my lap, that was the worst part. Here's this little thing who didn't ask to be a part of any of this."

Lawrence said when she saw the runway below with ambulances and fire trucks waiting, she "started praying." The plane landed safely.

03 of 19


David x Prutting bfa.com

In September 2021, the singer posted to Instagram after an emergency landing en route to Texas.

"This is the picture I took right before we took off for El Paso for tonight," he wrote. "In mid air our door seal broke and we had to sit with seats belts on tight so that we didn't get swept out the airlock like princess Leia in episode 8.. (I guess the guy behind me was trying to fix it) anyway we are looking for a new jet so trying to make the show a little late... but we didn't die so thats the good news and we are on track to live and work another day 🖤🤎🤍💔. (Update we are trying to still get to Texas tonight so bare with us....?"

04 of 19



But that wasn't the first time he'd had a mid-air scare. Diplo was on his way to perform in Columbus and Minneapolis when his "jet window just cracked open" mid-flight. He wrote in an Instagram post, complete with a photo of the very damaged windshield, "Dear Columbus and Minneapolis, my jet window just cracked open and the pilots are wearing masks so not sure ill make my shows tonight but they left the wifi on so I'm just going to sit in the back and smoke toad venom and Vlog. I just bought this cool vest in Dallas at a thrift store.....Also I never told you this but I might by gay..." The 40-year-old made reference to a scene from the film, Almost Famous, in which a character abruptly announces, "I'm gay!" during a particularly turbulent flight.

Diplo eventually updated his fans, saying "Update: we landed and no one died I still might be gay but I'm definitely not going to tye die anymore jets." (He had recently tie dyed his personal jet.)

At least the star learned something from the experience. In a follow-up post, he said, "Yesterday I learned that life is fragile so I started a skin care routine. Also if your [sic] thinking of dating me or even a one night stand you should hit me up soon cause you never know I could be eaten by an alligator or something on one of my weird tours."

05 of 19

Hulk Hogan

Hulk Hogan
Lou Rocco/Walt Disney Television via Getty

While en route to Saudi Arabia for the Crown Jewel wrestling event, the WWE legend's plane made an emergency landing in Iceland on Oct. 29, 2019, that "blew out the tires" and melted the brakes, according to Hogan.

"All right, guys, we are here in Iceland, and there's our plane. We just had a really hard landing," Hogan said in a video obtained by TMZ. Luckily, Hogan and fellow WWE star Jimmy Hart didn't have to wait long to get on their way — while they were waiting to change planes, they ran into a friend who offered to take them to their destination on his own plane.

"He's gonna be graceful enough to let us climb on board and continue the journey … we're gonna make it," Hogan said.

06 of 19

Paula Abdul

Paula Abdul
Drew Altizer Photography/Shutterstock

At the October 2019 opening of her new Las Vegas residency, the singer and legendary choreographer recalled an alleged 1992 plane crash that she previously spoke to PEOPLE about in 2005.

"It all happened when I boarded a seven-seater plane and an hour into the flight one of the engines blew up and the right wing caught fire and everything went black," she said. "I woke up in the hospital only to find that I had crushed my cervical spine, leaving me partially paralyzed."

She added that she "endured 15 cervical spine surgeries" and "disappeared for seven years," and that the crash ultimately had a profound impact on her mental health, as well. "I lost myself, I lost my passion and that little girl inside me who was once fearless. But even through all of that there was one thing that kept me going, one gift that stood by my side, and that one gift is each and every one of you," she said to her fans.

07 of 19

Dale Earnhardt, Jr.

Dale Earnhardt Jr.; Amy Earnhardt
Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images

The NASCAR star, along with his wife and young daughter, escaped without injuries from a fiery small plane crash in Elizabethton, Tennessee.

"Amy and I want to thank everyone who has lifted us up with phone calls, messages and prayer since last Thursday," Earnhardt wrote on Instagram in the aftermath. "We are truly blessed that all on board escaped with no serious injuries, including our daughter, our two pilots and our dog Gus."

08 of 19

Brandi, Tish & Miley Cyrus

miley cyrus, Brandi Cyrus, Tish Cyrus
Larry Busacca/Getty Images

On a July 2019 episode of her podcast, Brandi recalled a scary landing the family experienced en route to that year's Glastonbury music festival in England.

"Out of nowhere, as we're landing, we swoop back up and like bank to the left, and turn and like, it feels crazy," she said, adding that her mom and sister, who are nervous flyers, "just start losing their minds."

"So we're sitting here thinking like what in the world is going on," she said.

After a few tense moments, Brandi said that the flight crew eventually explained that there was "no need to panic, but somebody was in our lane in the sky, and we were going to hit them, so we had to come back up and move."

"That's terrifying to think about," Brandi said. "Like, you're going like what? 400 miles an hour? And a plane is like, in your lane, like that's insane."

But her story didn't end there.

"After like 10 minutes of circling us around, they go back to land again — same frickin' thing happens," Brandi said, revealing that this time there was a plane in the way on the runway. "They had to swoop back up and bank again."

Brandi said that her mom started crying after the second mishap, and tearfully expressed fear for the youngest Cyrus daughter, who wasn't with them on the trip: "She's like, 'if we die, Noah's alone!' and like freaking out."

Apparently, the flight crew told them that it was hard to land because so many planes were arriving for the festival.

Though the encounter sounds harrowing, thankfully, the group eventually landed safely and made it to the festival.

09 of 19

Christie Brinkley

2016 Chefs & Champagne For Elephants
Steven A Henry/Getty Images

On April 1, the model reflected on the 25th anniversary of the helicopter crash that almost killed her and five others in Telluride, Colorado, during a heli-skiing tour.

On Instagram, Brinkley shared the April 18, 1994, issue of PEOPLE, which she was featured on the cover of, writing, "This happened 25 years ago today and not a day goes by that I have not counted my blessing for being alive."

Heli-skiing is when people are transported by helicopter to remote peaks rather than using a typical ski-lift after each run down the slope.

But as Brinkley's helicopter approached a high peak, it took an unexpected sharp turn and began a 200-ft. tumble on a 40-degree incline. At some point, Brinkley recalled, she began thinking, "I am going to die. Right now? Like this? A ski trip? Today?"

The model eventually fell out of the helicopter's open door, landing in the snow on her back. Once she landed, Brinkley said she squinted up at the sunlight and thought, "I am alive! God!"

In 2021, she revealed she'd had a hip replacement the year prior due to lingering pain from the incident.

"The pain in my hip got a little bit worse each year," Brinkley explained, adding that she was told 12 years before that her hip needed to be replaced, but the idea was too "daunting" at the time.

10 of 19

Keanu Reeves

John Wick 2 Photocall & Press Conference In Berlin

Reeves channeled his quick-thinking Speed character during a recent real-life travel emergency. After his flight from San Francisco to Burbank, California, was forced to make an emergency landing in Bakersfield in March 2019, the actor and his fellow passengers were stranded at a closed airport as they waited on transportation to Los Angeles.

Freelance cartoonist Brian Rea captured the emergency on social media, tracking Reeves' movements and calls to action in a hilariously epic Instagram Story as the actor helped explain the possible transportation options to fellow passengers.

A 2-hour van ride to L.A. was the fastest solution at that point, and Reeves proved himself to be the ideal road trip companion. The Matrix actor kept the group entertained by reading out facts about Bakersfield and playing country music native to the area, which Rea luckily caught on camera.

11 of 19

Jason Momoa

CinemaCon 2017 - Warner Bros. Pictures Presentation
Gabe Ginsberg/WireImage

He may play a superhero, but even the Aquaman star isn't immune to scary plane experiences. In early March 2019, Momoa's plane was forced to make an emergency landing shortly after taking off from Palm Springs, California.

The 39-year-old actor shared a video of himself on his Instagram Stories in which he explained, "We got ourselves a slight delay."

"Half an hour out of Palm Springs and the plane wanted to start a fire," he said. "So, uh, yeah. Good old fire department, gotta love them. Looks like we're driving."

Momoa shared a video of the fire department but later shared the plane was back up and running again.

12 of 19

Jennifer Aniston & Courteney Cox

American Film Institute's 46th Life Achievement Award Gala Tribute to George Clooney - Backstage
Kevin Mazur/Getty

The real-life Friends were en route to Mexico to celebrate Aniston's 50th birthday in February 2019 when the star's private plane was forced to circle back and make an emergency landing in Ontario, California.

"I'm not afraid of flying at all, my dad was a pilot, but I was really scared because when we were taking off, we heard this really loud bang," Cox told Extra. "I was like, 'Oh, that sounds like we should probably check that tire.' "

Cox continued, "There was no tire at all, there was no wheel. Luckily, there are two wheels on each side and two in the front." The actress added that while they were "in the air for four hours, burning off fuel," she could only think of what the landing would be like — but ultimately, "It was a really smooth landing," she shared.

The airport closed down so their plane could land, a source told PEOPLE. The actresses and their friends waited at the airport before boarding a new flight to Mexico.

13 of 19

Post Malone

Chelsea Lauren/REX/Shutterstock

The rapper's private jet made an emergency landing after its tires blew out on takeoff in August 2018. The flight was scheduled to go from New Jersey to London, but ended up spending five hours circling airports to burn off fuel before safely landing in New Windsor, New York.

"I f---ing hate flying," the star told TMZ after finally getting back on the ground. "We just heard the tire pop. And then, I don't know if it was smoke or whatever, [came in], and we were like, 'S---. This is not good at all.' "

"I just put everybody in a big group text [to] tell them I love them, just in case," he said about how he handled being in flight after the malfunction. "I just did it all in one. You know, my family and everybody and my friends. This was before anybody knew [about the plane], I was just like, 'Hey, guys, I love you.' I didn't want to f---ing freak people out and then be stuck in the air."

"I'm alive, man, I'm ready to party," Malone added.

14 of 19

Morgan Freeman

2018 National Geographic Upfront
Bryan Bedder/Getty

In December 2015, the Driving Miss Daisy actor was flying to Texas to shoot a segment for the series The Story of God when his plane blew a tire during takeoff, forcing it to make an emergency landing at a Mississippi airport.

The actor was unharmed, and no injuries were reported.

"Sometimes things don't go as planned and a tire blew on takeoff which caused other problems," Freeman, then 78, said in a statement to PEOPLE.

"But thanks to my excellent pilot Jimmy Hobson we landed safely without a scratch," he added. "I cannot say the same about my plane. I appreciate the concern and prayers for our safety."

15 of 19

Leonardo DiCaprio

Leonardo DiCaprio attends a BAFTA screening of 'The Revenant'
Dave J Hogan/Getty

The daredevil actor is no stranger to near-death experiences: "If a cat has nine lives, I think I've used a few," DiCaprio told WIRED in December 2015. From a shark attack and skydiving accident to a near plane crash, the adrenaline junkie shared his tales of his extreme adventuring with the outlet.

"I was in business class, and an engine blew up in front of my eyes," he recalled. "I was sitting there looking out at the wing, and the entire wing exploded in a fireball."

He continued: "They shut all the engines off for a couple of minutes, so you're just sitting there gliding with absolutely no sound, and nobody in the plane was saying anything. It was a surreal experience. They started the engines back up, and we did an emergency landing at JFK."

16 of 19

Harrison Ford

Harrison Ford
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Ford has been involved in several piloting accidents over the years. The most serious was in March 2015, when he crash-landed at a Santa Monica golf course after encountering engine trouble. Ford, who was flying a yellow vintage fighter plane, suffered a broken arm and lacerations to his scalp.

In February 2017, Ford had another close call when he flew overtop a jetliner carrying 110 passengers, which was taxiing as he mistakenly landed his private single-engine plane in a taxiway instead of the runway, according to authorities. The controversial landing at John Wayne Airport in Orange County, California, prompted an investigation by the Federal Aviation Administration.

17 of 19

Miranda Lambert

53rd Academy Of Country Music Awards - Red Carpet
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In June 2014, CBS reported that the country star's private jet made an emergency landing in Clarksburg, West Virginia, while transporting the singer from New York City (where she'd appeared on Good Morning America) to Nashville for the CMT Awards. The plane reportedly lost pressure while in the air and was grounded for three hours, Lambert's publicist Wes Vause told CBS.

However, Lambert didn't seem fazed, instead befriending some local firefighters and trying on their platinum suits (appropriately, Platinum was the name of Lambert's new album at the time) before taking back to the skies and landing safely in Nashville.

18 of 19

Ashton Kutcher & Demi Moore

Charity Gala With Demi Moore And Ashton Kutcher - Private Dinner
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In August 2009, then-married Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore were flying to New York City after the premiere of Kutcher's movie Spread when their airplane was forced to make an emergency landing in Las Vegas after the engine apparently overheated.

Luckily, neither actor was injured. Kutcher reported the scary incident on Twitter, writing, "My plane just had to do an emergency landing. Engine over heated. Fire engines everywhere good times." He later posted an update saying he was "happy to be alive."

Moore also chimed in about the incident on Twitter. "Yep it is always an adventure in Vegas emergency landing and all," she wrote.

19 of 19

Travis Barker

John Shearer/WireImage

The Blink-182 drummer survived a plane crash that killed four other people in 2008. "I looked Death right in the face," he told Rolling Stone of the crash.

He suffered second and third-degree burns after the accident but recuperated enough to get back in the studio two months later. "I can't wait to get out of here and be home with the babes," he wrote, referencing his kids, in the weeks after the accident. "The doctors say I'm healing up quickly, and I'm going to be out of here before you know it."

In 2021, he got back on a plane for the first time since the accident, traveling to Mexico with girlfriend Kourtney Kardashian.

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