It could go down as one of the most iconic moments of the opening ceremony for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games. Midway through the theatrical performance, Brazilian bombshell Gisele Bundchen sashayed out onto the main floor of the Marcana Stadium, and an equally iconic song — The Girl From Ipanema — was performed.
Bundchen, who is one of the highest-paid models in the world, is extremely popular in Brazil was unsurprisingly greeted by a roar of delight from the 60,000 fans in the stadium.
It would be her last catwalk, Gisele said ahead of time, and she did it in style, dressed to the nines in a shimmering silver dress with her trademark flowing hair blowing behind her.
— JetsettersFlyin™ ✈️ (@JetSettersFlyIn) August 6, 2016
“This is for sure the longest runway I have ever walked in my life and by far with the most amount of people watching, so it is a little nerve-racking I must say,” she told People. “This is a very special moment for my country and I am humbled that they invited me to be a part of such a special celebration.”
After she complete the walk, Gisele found her place in the stands, where she joined other fans in celebrating for the remainder of the ceremony, which included plenty of dancing.
Gisele dancing gives me life… pic.twitter.com/A3CRrMtrni
— Only In Boston (@OnlyInBOS) August 6, 2016
Gisele’s participation in the Olympic opening ceremony was perfectly beautiful, but there was one thing noticeably absent: Her husband, Tom Brady.
With all the shots of Gisele dancing, you have to wonder why Tom Brady wasn’t invited too? pic.twitter.com/rHh1BfRoHD
— Scott Kahler (@SKahler) August 6, 2016
According to reports, Brady couldn’t be present for Gisele’s final catwalk because he was stuck in training camp. A few weeks ahead of the Olympics, the New England Patriots quarterback told People that he wasn’t certain he’d be able to attend the event because of timing.
“For me, [the Olympics] are right in the middle of training camp so I need to talk my coach out of a couple days of practice. I haven’t asked them so, we’ll see!”
It would appear that Brady wasn’t able to work anything out with the Patriots, but that didn’t stop him from gushing about Gisele’s love for her mother country.
“She loves the country,” Brady told People. “She has never forgotten where she’s come from. She’s such a great role model. Obviously she’s my wife, so I’m biased, but I think she is someone that represents her country. I think she stayed really true to her roots. If you came to our house, you’d think we’d been living in Brazil. Everyone around speaks Portuguese. Which I wish I’d learned more at this point.”
Happy Birthday my love! We miss you and wish we could be with you today. Sending you all our love. May this year bring you so much joy and fulfillment. We love you!! ❤????✨???? Feliz aniversário meu amor! Nós estamos com saudades e queríamos estar com você hoje. Receba todo nosso amor. Que esse ano lhe traga muitas alegrias e realizações. Nós te amamos!
Gisele traveled to Brazil with her two children, Vivi, 5, and Benjamin, 3 — both of whom speak fluent Portuguese.
For Gisele, returning to Brazil to participate in the opening ceremony was an honor that cannot be matched, she told People.
The Olympics symbolize so much for our global community. The unity that is felt is amazing and gives me goose bumps. There is so much dedication and love the athlete’s themselves pour into their chosen sport. Each athlete has given their all to achieve lifelong dreams and their journeys have led them here to Rio to compete for their countries with pride. The energy is electric and contagious. I am so happy to be part of the opening ceremony in my homeland and to celebrate these bright stars from around the globe. I truly believe that each Olympian lights the path for the next young child dreaming of being at the Olympics and encourages the practice of sports. As I walk down tonight on the longest runway I have ever been on I will be sending out all my love and positivity. I am humbled and honored to be part of this historic moment for my country. I believe that the unity is the key to creating a world filled with kindness, gratitude, peace, and love.❤️???????????????????? Os Jogos Olímpicos simbolizam muito para a nossa comunidade global. A união de todos os povos é maravilhosa e me dá arrepios. É tocante ver que os atletas colocam toda sua dedicação e amor no esporte escolhido por eles. Cada atleta deu seu melhor ao longo de sua vida para alcançar seus sonhos, e suas jornadas os trouxeram aqui para o Rio para competir por seus países, com orgulho. A energia é eletrizante e contagiante. Estou muito feliz por fazer parte da cerimônia de abertura no meu país e por celebrar as estrelas do esporte de todo o mundo. Eu realmente acredito que cada atleta olímpico ilumina o caminho para a próxima criança que sonha fazer parte dos Jogos Olímpicos e estimula a prática do esporte. Hoje à noite, quando eu desfilar pela mais longa passarela em que já estive, vou estar enviando todo o meu amor e positividade. Sinto-me honrada por fazer parte deste momento histórico para o meu país. Acredito que união é a chave para criar um mundo cheio de bondade, gratidão, paz e amor.
“It was an honor for me to be invited to take part of the opening ceremonies in my country. I always loved watching the opening ceremonies through the years and the Olympic games are one of my favorite sporting events to watch. It’s a beautiful celebration of all the diversity in the world through sports. It’s so nice to see the world come together at these times. To me, it feels like at this moment we can all be as one.”
Did you watch Gisele on her final catwalk across the floor of the Olympic opening ceremony? What did you think of her participation?
[Photo by Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images]