The world's most famous would-be Spider-Man yesterday became the
third man to climb Shanghai's tallest building - and was promptly
arrested by police.
Officers have confirmed that the daredevil, bare-handed climber
who illegally scaled the 88 floors of Jin Mao Tower in Pudong is
Frenchman Alain Robert, who already has a number of global
skyscraper "triumphs." True to form, Robert, 45, alerted the media
beforehand and was rewarded by a sea of cameras - and hordes of
onlookers on the ground.
He began his 420.5-meter ascent at 2:20 PM yesterday,
dressed in a blue and red costume with a mask, just like the
fictional superhero of comic books and movies, Spider-Man.
In fact the third film in the Spider-Man series has
just screened in city cinemas, drawing big crowds.
"I saw him pass my window on the 30th floor," said a witness
employed in the tower, who only identified himself as Eddie. A
tower official, Bao Lili, said: "We called police soon after we got
After climbing to the top of the tower and giving a cheeky
salute, Robert made a safe descent, arriving on the ground about
4:00 PM. On the way down, Robert, ever the showman, took off his
mask, waved to the appreciative crowd, and even stopped to pose for
photographers. As he was taken away by police he received a
resounding cheer from onlookers.
Robert has conquered many highrises, including Taipei 101 Tower,
the Golden Gate Bridge, the Petronas Twin Towers and the Eiffel
Tower - and is thus no stranger to police custody. He told
reporters before his climb yesterday: "If you obey all the rules,
you miss the fun."
Late last night, police said Robert will be detained for five
On April 23, 2005, Guizhou Province native Han Degui reached the
86th floor of Jin Mao Tower. Han descended with the help of police
and was taken into custody for 15 days. On February 18, 2001, shoe
salesman Han Qizhi, "struck by a rash impulse," became the first
person to scale the tower. He was detained for two weeks.
(Shanghai Daily June 1, 2007)