Air New Zealand drops bikini safety video after outrage

Mike Gwilliam, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 6:25 PM ET

Air New Zealand has scrapped a new in-flight safety video after thousands signed a petition saying it sexualized the female body.

The Sports Illustrated 50th anniversary film, which was four-minutes in length, features half-naked women explaining safety procedures.

A petition on calling for the video to be removed had more than 7,000 signatures.

The airline is denying it pulled the video due to public pressure.

According to The Daily Mail, a spokesman for Air New Zealand said the videos are scheduled and the Sport Illustrated video had reached the end of its run and was gradually being phased out of the aircrafts it was used on.