Embracing Life's Journey

"Courage and Passion have been the guiding forces in my life, propelling me to explore uncharted territories and conquer formidable challenges. They are the spark that ignites possibilities, shaping my journey and defining my ultimate destiny."
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Live performances
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Visited countries
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Books sold
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Broken bones

Success Through Dedication: A Lifetime's Journey Unfolded

Over the past thirty years, I've navigated the intersection of the entertainment industry and sports, forging a path defined by passion, resilience in the face of adversity, and the pursuit of new career opportunities that have ultimately led to success. Scroll down the timeline of my long career originating from Finland to Hollywood, China and beyond.

2024-02-02

IIROSEPPANEN.COM IS OPEN

Welcome to my new website!

I had my first website built right at the beginning of the internet. Throughout my career, I've had various personal websites, but they were eventually replaced by social media platforms. Rather than uploading my life for these large companies to own, I have decided to have my own platform.

Many of my adventures took place before the YouTube era, and I've gathered some of my life's highlights here on this timeline.

I may not have had a single standout success that you'd recognize, but this timeline serves as a testament to how an average guy like myself has managed to turn sometimes seemingly impossible dreams into reality.

2024

"3x7x77: Face Your Fear”

In 2023, I reconnected with the other founders of 3x7x77 with a shared mission: to reunite our tribe for positive change. It is a community for like-minded individuals, inspiring one another to be the best version of themselves and to use courage as fuel in life.

2022

Anatomy of Fear:

In 2022, I teamed up with Vappu Pimia to introduce a Fear and Courage Masterclass in Finland. This initiative aimed to equip participants with practical insights and strategies for embracing courage and reducing fear in their lives.

Over the course of three weeks, we released three weekly episodes focusing on various topics. These episodes culminated in a live Q&A session where participants had the opportunity to engage further with the content and ask questions.

Participants were able to walk away from the Fear and Courage Masterclass with practical tools and insights for cultivating courage and overcoming fear in their daily lives. Additionally, they gained a deeper understanding of how to navigate challenges with resilience and optimism.

2022 to today

Back in front of live audiences

Emerging from the shadows of the Covid-19 pandemic, I reclaimed the stage, standing before live audiences once again. I've embarked on a journey across Europe, delivering impassioned speeches on courage, creativity, and risk-taking.

Yet, it's not just about the words I share; it's the incredible connection with my audiences that truly invigorates me. Their reactions, their interactions—each moment sparks a fire within, driving me to keep empowering and inspiring all those who listen.

2021

Podcasting

I've gotten to visit different podcasts, including Fear itself, where actress Cressida Bonas invites guests to share their personal stories around fear. How does fear show up, how do people try to hide it, how can we harness it and what can we learn from it?

 

2021

Virtual studio

The Covid pandemic cleared my speaking calendar, but I decided to see it as an opportunity to build a digital studio in my man-cave and connect with my clients virtually. 

I have provided online coaching sessions on fear and courage to audiences ranging from individuals to hundreds of participants.

2020

We move from South Africa to the UK

I loved our life in South Africa, but it was difficult to keep developing my European work contracts from there. I moved almost 20 years ago, but it felt right to return to be closer to my parents, and start life with my new family.

In the middle of the worst Covid pandemic, our family moved to UK. 

2020

I’m voted best new speaker 

My story about overcoming adversities resonated well and many clients hired me to inspire and motivate their troops. I was voted as the "best new speaker" by Speakersforum Finland. 

2019

A mini-series Äärirajoilla (Life Wish) for Discovery is released

Synchronised with the release of my book, a 4 part-mini series of my life story and adventures was released on Channel 5 and Discovery + platforms in Finland.  

2019

My autobiography Kolme Elämää is published

I had always been private about my personal life, but I felt my story could inspire others to overcome their adversities. My autobiography “Kolme Elämää” (Three Lives) was published in Finland by Siltala Publishing in hard and soft cover, plus audiobook formats. My story has been read and listened to by over 20,000 persons. 

2019

My daughter Freya is born

March 25 was probably the happiest day in my life. Julia, her son Cesar, already like my own son, and I welcome Freya to our family. 

2017

6th World Wingsuit League, China

I’m at my best when I innovate and create new things, but now I was starting feel like I had nothingness to offer to World Wingsuit League I had been a visible international ambassador for the sport of BASE-jumping, but with so many deaths in my life, I did not see any purpose in continuing to promote the sport. It was time to move on and step down as the President of WWL. 

2017

The biggest tragedy of my life

My wife’s ex-husband murdered her 31/2-year-old twins, Maximo and Octavia. Julia is the strongest, most loving person in the world and she found strength in herself to continue moving forward for the sake of our surviving son Cesar. Together the three of us fought against darkness with light and love.  

2016

5th WWL China grand prix 

Wingsuit racing continued to evolve. Hitting targets had become the “next big thing” in BASE-jumping, so besides racing for speed, we introduced the accuracy competition. As head of the social media strategy for WWL, I produced videos, articles and online competitions to a growing fan base, now measuring in six figures.

2016

Wings over Rio

Before the inauguration of the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, we were hired by Red Bull China to invite a group of international wingsuit pilots to fly past Rio’s Statue of Christ. 

Human Arrow at the Great Wall of China

After years of planning, we were able to secure permits for third Jeb Corliss project: “Human Arrow” on the Great Wall of China. We teamed up with GoPro to showcase the evolution in wingsuit flying and GoPro camera streaming technology. This was a modern version of William Tell, where Jeb exited from a chopper, flew about a kilometre in distance and hit a target site — an apple — with his head.  

2015

4TH WWL China Grand Prix

We had a mutually benefiting relationship with Red Bull China for several years, growing quickly and bringing more partners on board. We collaborated with AMG Mercedes in the Fastest Human title race, and organised a friendly demo race between Formula 1 star Mika Häkkinen and Jeb Corliss in the spirit of Auto vs. Wingsuit. 

2015

Mission accomplished: 100 different countries!

I’ve always loved to travel. As the big 40 approached, I set myself an ambitious goal to visit 100 countries before my birthday. Box ticked. Visiting new countries and learning from the different cultures helped me understand and love the differences and similarities in humans. I have a new challenge: to visit them all. I have been to 122 countries, so far. 

2014

3rd WWL China Grand Prix

2013 was a horrible year for wingsuit flying, 25% of our athletes lost their lives in different accidents outside of racing. After losing Hungarian Victor Kovats the previous year, we had to reevaluate the safety of competitions. We took away challenging mid-air turns to alleviate risks, and introduced a safer head-to-head racing format. Our previous races had been invitational only, but now pilots had to qualify to race.

2013

2nd WWL China Grand Prix

Wingsuit BASE-jumping is the world’s most dangerous sport and our perfect safety record lasted only until our second event, when Victor died due to human error during the first practice round. One of the hardest things I have ever done was dealing with the aftermath of his accident. 

2013

Flying Dagger, the megastunt in China

For our next live stunt, we selected a narrow crack in the Jianglang Mountains in China’s Zhejian Province. Jeb Corliss jumped out of a helicopter and flew through a narrow crack in the mountain at 122 miles per hour. The crack was 15-feet wide at the bottom and 60-feet wide at the top, Jeb flew through it without a problem. Flying Dagger was televised live in Greater China and a documentary about its production was seen in dozens of International countries. 

2012

Time Magazine lists WWL as one of its Best Inventions of the Year

Every year, TIME highlights inventions making the world a better, smarter, more interesting place. In 2012, the list featured, among others, Google Glass, The Curiosity Rover, Tesla Model S…and my creation Wingsuit racing.

2011

Snorkelling with whale sharks and WildAid

I joined WildAid to experience spectacular snorkelling with a seasonal gathering of gentle whale sharks in the shallow waters off the Yucatán Peninsula, near Isla Contoy, off Cabo Catoche. My contribution to the cause was organising and producing the filming of the Public Service Announcement for WildAid hosted by Richard Branson and Maggie Q - an actress and nature conservationist.

2012

First WWL China Grand Prix

We invited 16 wingsuit pilots to compete for the world’s fastest human title. The inaugural WWL race was a huge success, televised live to millions of viewers in Greater China. 

2012

Manta’s last dance

As the finale to the Manta Ray of Hope Campaign, I joined world renown underwater photographer Shawn Hendricks for his Manta Ray project in Kona Hawaii. The shoot was a key element in a conservation media campaign by WildAid and Shark Savers, working together on the Manta Ray of Hope project to raise serious awareness for manta rays leading up to an extremely important CITES meeting in early March 2013.

2012

Founding World Wingsuit League 

I’m a born entrepreneur and I love to develop intellectual properties from the ground up. After a successful Heaven’s Gate, our partners wanted another event. This gave me the push to envision a brand new sport: wingsuit racing. It was a balance of creativity and execution. My duties included everything from creating brand identity to developing technology for accurate timing systems. 

2011

Meeting the mountain gorillas

I had the unique opportunity of a close-up encounter with wild gorillas in the Virunga Massif. The largest living primates are spread across equatorial rainforests in a volcanic mountain range spanning Rwanda, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. There are approximately 1,000 mountain gorillas in the wild, with 604 in the Virunga Massif. The population is slowly increasing, thanks to concerted efforts between our governments, communities and NGOs.

2005- 2011

How long it took me make a HOLLYWOOD film.

I never went to film school, I learned how to make movies by MAKING THEM! Slowly but surely, my projects grew and I worked my way up in Hollywood. Probably the most famous film I was involved on as an executive producer was the Robert De Niro, 50 Cent and Forest Whitaker film Freelancers. 

2011-2012

Photographing the Wonders of the World

I have always followed my passion and as a result, I have had awesome jobs! One work assignment rises above everything else. In 2012, I was hired to photograph 14 “Wonders of the World”. I spent the year traveling to spectacular locations and capturing images of Machu Picchu, Iguazu Falls, Petra temple, the Great Pyramids, Rapa Nui (Eastern Island) and the Nazca Lines. 

It was incredible to witness how ancient civilisation blossomed and then vanished. I believe if you look at history, you can see sometimes see the future. We have to learn from the mistakes of earlier civilisations in order not to repeat them. 

2013

Heaven's Gate sold to National Geographic

I produced a documentary "Heaven's Gate" about our live event in China. It toured, and won first prizes, at the documentary  film festival circuit and ended up being acquired by National Geographic. 

2012

National TV and Billboard campaign in China

Heaven's Gate had propelled Jeb Corliss into fame in China. In 2012, Red Bull China enlisted Pan Pacific Entertainment to orchestrate and capture their national TV, billboard, and print campaign. I led the conceptualization and contributed to production oversight.
 
When Jeb, the commercial's star, got injured, I stepped in as his aerial stunt double for the skydiving scenes.

2011

The greatest megastunt of all-time 

As part of the countdown to Nik Wallenda’s high wire stunt over Niagara Falls, ABC TV network organised voting for “The Greatest Megastunt of All Time”; the viewers selected our Heaven’s Gate stunt as the winner by a landslide. 

2011

Heaven’s Gate 

Jeb Corliss flies through Heaven’s Gate — a hole in the side of a mountain in Tianmen, China, in front of a live TV audience of hundreds of millions. It’s the first time a wingsuit jump has been described as a megastunt, taking a highly technical, death-defying flight to a massive live TV audience. 

2011

Pan Pacific Entertainment

After the Beijing Olympics, the world’s attention was directed to China. I wanted to establish a presence in the merging market and in 2010 my business partner Frank Yang and myself formed Pan Pacific Entertainment in Hong Kong to bridge Hollywood with China.

Our company initially focused on arranging B2B meetings between leading Chinese studios and Hollywood filmmakers. We swiftly expanded our services to include organizing industry conventions and providing Chinese animation services to clients worldwide. Recognizing that developing our own intellectual property (IP) was essential for success, we prioritized this endeavor.

2008

Overcoming my phobia of sharks

Fear is not necessarily something we're born with, but it's something we’ve developed over time. After watching the Jaws movie as a kid, I developed a fear of sharks aka galeophobia. I got over my fear by swimming with them — and analysing the numbers: there’s a one in 3,748,067 chance of you being attacked and killed by a shark. In return humans kill about 100 million sharks each year. You're more likely to die by a dog attack, lightning strike, or car crash.

2007

My Journey to the Center

I produced my first feature-length documentary Journey to the Center, filmed in China.

"JOURNEY... ...with three world-renowned BASE jumpers as they travel 10,000 miles by airplane, river boat and 4x4 truck... TO... ...confront the mist and mystery of an old cave, an ancient culture, and their own demons at... THE CENTER... ...of their dangerous mission: Tian Keng, the Heavenly Pit. Millions of years old, half a mile deep, waiting for eons to test the endurance, skill and courage of the men who dare to parachute into her heart."

The film won festival awards and was licensed by Discovery International for global distribution .

2006

The Courier 2.0

CBS ordered a sequel for The Courier which we shot in Prague. This big budget micro-series was directed by Ericsson Core of Point Break 2 fame. 

 

2006

Empire States Building

In 2006, I was commissioned to document an event in New York City. Here's how some media outlets covered it:

"Jeb Corliss, then known as the host of the Discovery Channel show 'Stunt Junkies,' arrived at the building on April 27, 2006, disguised in a fat suit concealing his jumping gear. Upon reaching the observatory level on the 86th floor, he retreated to the bathroom, shed the fat suit, and emerged clad in a black jumpsuit, parachute, and a helmet equipped with a camera. Despite navigating past the safety barriers, he was intercepted by off-duty police officers, who restrained him to a fence, removed his parachute, and subsequently arrested him after freeing him from the fence."

2005

Ground is the Limit

I produced and co-directed Ground is the Limit documentary film. My dream was to become a producer so I started my career by telling stories about my beloved sport and by hiring experienced film makers. I studied how they worked and absorbed all the necessary skills like a sponge.

2005

Birth of 3x7x77

In 2005, I co-founded the 3x7x77 (3triple) community in Los Angeles. The cryptic numbers came attached with a hidden secret and a profound message. It's an understanding that time on this planet is limited, and we should be present in this moment. Ever since then, the 3777 philosophy has echoed within the extreme sports community and has manifested into a world of adventures, art, and inspiration.

Our symbol has become known as a symbol for courage, not absence of fear, but doing something despite it. It has been embraced globally by BASE jumpers, skydivers, snowboarders, adventurers, airsoft enthusiasts, climbers and many other active persons.

2005

The Courier on CBS

I had played cops and robbers since I was a kid, but now I got paid for the same activities. I was playing a special ops soldier whose wife and kid had been kidnapped and I had to use my skills to free them. The Courier was launched as the first ever multimedia intellectual property on CBS and it also played on Times Square in NYC.

2003

My own (extreme-) AMUSEMENT PARK!

As a kid, I absolutely loved amusement parks, but it took me quite some time to gather the courage to hop on those thrilling rides. Like any typical child, I always dreamed of having my own amusement park. Well, in 2003, that dream finally came true! My partners and I proudly opened X-ON Park in Finland.

We offered a range of adrenaline-pumping experiences, from bungee and catapult towers to zorbing balls, bungee trampolines, and even competition paintball gun fields.

2004

My move to Los Angeles

Even though I had been quite fearless in BASE-jumping, I had allowed my fears to prevent me from following my dreams to Hollywood. Surviving in the world’s most dangerous sport had given me enough confidence to stop making excuses and start living to my full potential.

 

2003

3rd BASE-jumping world record

It was an honour to be one of the 19 persons jumping simultaneously from the Perrine Bridge in Idaho to break the multiway jump world record.

 

2003

BASE-jumping expedition to the world’s tallest falls

The Angel Falls is one of the sport’s Grand Slam objects and every jumper’s dream destination. I organised our own private expedition to make this dream a reality for my friends and me. 

2003

2nd BASE-jumping world record

I was part of the biggest multiway jump off a building, of 26 people exiting from the Ostankino Tower in Moscow, Russia

2002

BASE-jumping world championships

Even though I was still recovering after my accident, I wanted to jump from the famous Petronas Towers in Malaysia. I was invited to the sport’s world championships which allowed me to fulfil this dream.

2002

Finnish BASE Number 1

BASE is an acronym for Building (B) Antenna (A) Span (S) and Earth (E). Span is a Bridge . Since the early 80s, the community has kept track of the jumpers who have completed a jump from these four objects. My international BASE number is 646, my South African number is 14 and in 2003, I become the first person in Finland to jump from these four objects.  

2002

My life changing accident

My worst nightmare came true during a jump from Courthouse Mountain in Arizona. As I descended, my parachute opened, but it was facing the mountain, leading to a brutal collision moments later. It took hours for rescuers to reach me and save my life. 

From that fateful jump off Courthouse Mountain, my life took an unexpected turn. The impact left me unable to run, but it ignited an unwavering flame of resilience within me. It's a testament to the indomitable human spirit—how we can turn the most challenging circumstances into opportunities for growth and transformation.

My journey is a living testament to the idea that even in the face of adversity, we can find strength, redefine our limitations, and discover new paths to fulfillment. Life's challenges may alter our course, but they can never extinguish the inner light that guides us towards hope, purpose, and a profound appreciation for the journey itself."

2001

My first autobiography

I lived a dangerous life and I was certain that I would die at the age of 27. I wanted leave my mark on history and I rushed to release my first autobiography called Iiro Seppänen:  Extreme – Uskalluksen äärirajoilla. It was published by Gummerrus for Finnish audiences. 

2000

Iiro Seppänen - Extreme TV series

As my thirst for adventures grew, I knew there was no turning back to a career in magic. I wanted to be a professional BASE-jumper and used television to finance my first steps. I hosted a 10-episode series called Extreme where I traveled across the world BASE-jumping and skydiving. 

1999

1st BASE-jumping world record 

I had less than two dozen jumps, but somehow managed to talk myself into a slot on the biggest multiway jump from a cliff, with 24 people exiting together off Kjerag Mountain, Norway.

1999

My first BASE-jump

I wanted to taste human flight, and after skydiving 150 times, I felt ready for BASE-jumping. My first was a short jump from an antenna, but a giant leap into the world of Action Sports. This picture is taken in Norway of my jump number 8, or so.

1998

My second book: TAIKOJA JA TÄHTIÄ

Following the success of my first book, I wrote my second how-to-do magic book for Finnish audiences. I continued to teach basics of magic and introduced the history of magic. 

1997

The Iiro Seppänen Show

Media space continued to evolve and after two successful seasons on MTV-3, I was headhunted to a brand new TV network Nelonen (Channel Four) as one of the prolific faces.

My 10-episode magic series The Iiro Seppänen Show was the most viewed domestic television series on Channel 4 in 1997

1996

Straitjacket Escape 

I wanted to follow in the footsteps of Harry Houdini so I started to perform daring escapes. I headlined the 1996 Rantarock midsummer festival performing Houdini’s Straitjacket Escape. This feat allowed me to overcome my fear of heights, and set me on a path towards a life of excitement. 

1996

The first CD-Rom in Finland

The digital version of my book Magian Maailma was published as the first commercial CD-ROM in Finland

1996

My first book

To monetise my popularity, I wrote my first book Magian Maailma in order to share and teach magic tricks to future generations. It was published by WSOY, with a  first print of 7000 copies sold out in weeks, followed by a second run.

1996

My first skydive!!!

I have a confession to make. THAT'S A FAKE SMILE!

The first time I did a tandem skydive in Las Vegas, fear took over during the freefall, and I completely forgot to breathe. I was gasping for air like a fish stranded on dry land, and by the time the parachute opened, I was on the verge of passing out.

As I landed safely on the ground, I swore I'd never put myself through that again; it felt like pure luck that I survived. Never in a million years would I have imagined that parachuting off objects would eventually become my way of making a living.

1995

My first PRIME-TIME TV series 

In the mid 90s Finland had only three TV channels, so popular TV shows built careers. My first prime-time TV series on MTV-3 network was viewed by nearly one out of every five Finns. 

1993-

Becoming a household name

They say to strike while the iron is hot, and that's exactly what I did. I elevated my profile in Finland. I made sure to seize every opportunity for interviews and photo shoots. 

The increased publicity led to a surge in demand for live performances, and I found myself averaging over 200 shows per year for almost a decade.

1993

My own magic bar

While I was still underage, I performed as a magic bartender in bars and restaurants, and by the tender age of 18 I had my own Magic Bar in Planet Fun Fun amusement center. I performed magic tricks to drunken clients and flared (juggled) with booze bottles.

1991-1992

Turning Pro

At age of 16, I quit my formal education at Kallio’s secondary school for performing arts, for a career in entertainment. 

I had been practicing magic passionately for many years, all while earning a living and pursuing my studies. I was deeply passionate about what I did, and I believed that if I could master it as a craft, there would be enough people in the world willing to pay to watch me perform my magic tricks exceptionally well.

For me, success was defined by the ability to make a living doing something I loved. The potential financial upside would be a bonus, but true success lay in following my passion and calling.

1988

Young magician 

I did my first paid magic show at Aurora children’s hospital. I had been a patient years earlier and I did not expect to get paid, but a week later, I received a letter with 50 Finnish markka (about US$ 10) in mail. That inspired me to market myself as a magician for children’s parties in Helsinki area.

1997

Confronting stage fright

One of my biggest fears was standing in front of large audiences. I used to wait until the very last millisecond before stepping onto the stage with trembling hands. Over time, that fear began to subside, and I slowly started to enjoy my performances.

Thankfully, I didn't let my initial fears prevent me from pursuing my dreams. The decision to confront my fears head-on ultimately paved the way for a career later in life.

1981-82

My first lead role

I learned to read and write on the set of Robot von Rosenberg’s Adventures – An 8-episode TV-series for the Finnish Broadcasting Company (YLE)

1978 -

Acting earns pocket money

When I was just three years old, I portrayed the role of a little brother on Raili Rusto's TV drama "Kalpeat Naamat" (Pale Faces) for the Finnish Broadcasting Company.

Throughout my childhood, I took on various child roles on television. It felt like playing with friends, except it was in front of cameras, and I didn't think twice about it.

I even remember getting paid extra for wearing this bunny costume for the TV cameras.

17/07/1975

Hello! World!

I was born in Finland. My family consisted of journalist parents Kikka and Esko and 2-years-older brother Kaapo.  

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