SOCHI, Russia (CBS DC/AP) — American Winter Olympian Kate Hansen says her video of a wolf walking through a hallway in the athlete’s village was an elaborate hoax carried out with talk show host Jimmy Kimmel.
Hansen tweeted the video on her social media accounts and it went viral on YouTube.
Many media outlets fell for the prank and posted or played the video.
On his show, Kimmel explained how they pulled off the stunt: a crew built a replica of the hallway outside Hansen’s room at ABC’s Los Angeles studio. Then they rented a wolf and used a phone camera to record it walking through the set. Hansen’s breathy commentary was added to the video before she posted it.
On “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” Hansen said she was surprised by the reaction to the wolf video. “There was a little more backlash than I thought there would be,” she said. “But it was all worth it in the end.”
Kimmel then went on to chide those who broadcast the video without making sure it was real.
Hansen, in an interview on the show, said that “it kind of went a little crazy over here” when the wolf story started spreading.
Olympic organizers laughed off the prank. “It made me kind of laugh as an individual, not as an IOC spokesman,” International Olympic Committee spokesman Mark Adams said. “I don’t think there’s any harm done,I don’t think it’s anything serious.”
Sochi organizing committee spokeswoman Alexandra Kosterina said “we’ve seen lots of fake photos and fake videos.”
“It’s their business if they want to do that,” Kosterina said. “It’s OK. People are having fun.”
The U.S. Olympic Committee declined comment.
(TM and © Copyright 2014 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2014 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)