The first movie shooting in space

The first movie shooting in space

How about shooting a movie in orbit? Did you ever imagine it that way? Yes, this is true. A Russian actor and a film director have returned to Earth after spending 12 days on the International Space Station shooting scenes for the first movie in orbit. Yulia Peresild and Klim Shipenko landed as scheduled on Kazakhstan’s steppe early on Sunday, according to footage broadcast live by the Russian space agency.

If the project stays on track, the Russian crew will beat a Hollywood project announced last year by “Mission Impossible” star Tom Cruise together with Nasa and Elon Musk’s SpaceX.

Actress Yulia Peresild, 37, and film director Klim Shipenko, 38, blasted off from the Russia-leased Baikonur Cosmodrome in ex-Soviet Kazakhstan earlier this month, travelling to the ISS with another veteran cosmonaut Anton Shkaplerov to film scenes for “The Challenge”.

The movie’s plot, which has been mostly kept under wraps along with its budget, centres around a female surgeon who is dispatched to the ISS to save a cosmonaut.

Space travelling and politics

For Konstantin Kalachev, a political analyst, the space film is a matter of PR and a way to distract Russians from the problems Roscosmos is facing. “This is supposed to inspire Russians, show how cool we are, but I think Russians have completely lost interest in the space industry,” Kalachev said.

Space tourism

In an effort to spruce up its image and diversify its revenue, Russia revealed this year it would be reviving its space tourism programme to ferry fee-paying adventurers to the ISS. After a decade-long pause, it will send two Japanese tourists, including the billionaire Yusaku Maezawa, to the ISS in December, capping a year that has been a milestone for amateur space travel.

Last month SpaceX completed the first all-civilian mission to space, taking four astronauts on a three-day loop of the Earth’s orbit. The trip followed the missions of Richard Branson, who spent several minutes in weightlessness in July, and Amazon’s founder Jeff Bezos, who completed a similar mission days later.

This month William Shatner, now 90 and known for his portrayal of Captain Kirk in the Star Trek series, will fly to space on a mission with Bezos’s Blue Origin.

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