Russian film crew in orbit to make first movie in space

MOSCOW (AP) — A Russian actor and a film director rocketed to space Tuesday on a mission to make the world’s first movie in orbit, a project the Kremlin said will help burnish the nation’s space glory.

Russian film crew in orbit to make first movie in space

MOSCOW -- Tuesday's launch of a Russian actor and film director to space was part of a mission to create the first movie in space. The Kremlin believes this will enhance Russia's space fame.

Yulia Peresild, actress and director, set off in a Russian Soyuz spacecraft with Anton Shkaplerov (cosmonaut who has been on three space missions). Their Soyuz MS-19 spacecraft lifted off at 1:55 PM (0855 GMT), from Baikonur, Kazakhstan. They arrived at the station about 3 1/2 hours later.

After an error in the automatic docking system, Shkaplerov used manual controls to dock the spacecraft at the outpost.

They reported feeling great and that their spacecraft systems were working normally.

Klimenko and Peresild will film segments of "Challenge," a new movie in which Peresild plays a surgeon who rushes to rescue a crew member in need of an urgent orbital operation. They will be returning to Earth together with another Russian cosmonaut after 12 days at the space station.

Dmitry Peskov, a Kremlin spokesperson, said that the mission will showcase Russia's space prowess.

Peskov stated that "we have been pioneers of space exploration and kept a confident position." These missions, which help to promote our achievements and space exploration generally, are great for the country.

Peresild, 37 years old, acknowledged Monday that she had struggled to adjust to the rigorous training and discipline.

She said, "It was psychologically and physically difficult." "But once we reach the goal, it will all seem easy and we'll remember it with a smile."

Shipenko, 38, has been a director of several commercially successful movies. He also described the four-month-long preparations for the flight as difficult.

He said, "Officially, we couldn’t do many things at first try, sometimes even at third attempt, but that’s okay."

Shipenko will finish filming on Earth the movie's space episodes. Shkaplerov, Oleg Novitskiy, and Pyotr dubrov, will also be in the new movie.

Russia's state-controlled Channel One television has extensive coverage of the crew training and launch.

"I'm still in shock. "I still can't believe that my mom's out there," Peresild said to Anna in televised remarks, minutes after the launch. She also stated that her mother was missing.

Dmitry Rogozin (head of Roscosmos Russian state space corporation) was a major force behind this project. He described it as a chance for Russia to shine in space and rejected criticisms from Russian media.

Rogozin said Tuesday that he expected the project to draw attention to NASA's space program and the cosmonaut profession. We need better visualizations of space research. Space should be presented in a more professional and artistic way.

Rogozin congratulated the crew for their successful docking and said that he had personally edited the film script in order to accurately reflect the reality of space flight.

He said, "We describe some real emergency that might happen out there." The script states that the character of a cosmonaut in the film requires urgent surgery after being struck by space debris.

Commentators suggested that the film project could distract the Russian crew. It might also be difficult to film on the Russian section of the International Space Station which is much smaller than the U.S. segment. The Nauka, a new Russia lab module was added to the station in July. However, it has yet to be integrated fully into the station.

The three newcomers were joined by Thomas Pesquet, European Space Agency's Commander; NASA astronauts Mark Vande Hei and Shane Kimbrough; Roscosmos cosmonauts Novitskiy, Dubrov; Aki Hoshide, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency.

After the hatches between Soyuz Station and station were opened, the trio floated into the station beaming smiles and exchanging hugs.

Peresild stated that "I feel like i'm dreaming" during a short televised chat with Mission Control in Moscow.

Shipenko shared the same feeling. "We have been waiting so long for that, and in fact now we feel as if in a dream."

Novitskiy will play the role of the ailing cosmonaut. Novitskiy will be the captain in the Soyuz capsule that will transport the crew back to Earth on October 17.

NASA had spoken to Tom Cruise about filming a movie in space before Russia became the leader in feature filmmaking in this area.

NASA confirmed last year that they were in discussions with Cruise about filming at the International Space Station. SpaceX provided the lift. It was reported in May 2020 that Cruise was working with NASA, Elon Musk, and director Doug Liman to develop the project.

Representatives for SpaceX's first privately chartered flight stated that the actor participated in a call last month with four space tourists who orbited above 585 km (360 miles).

According to Liman, he was approached by P. J. van Sandwijk for the "impossible mission". He asked him if he would like to film a movie in outerspace. The details of the mission have been kept secret and there have not been any updates on their status. However, Liman stated that they are moving forward as of January.

Liman stated that there is still a lot to be figured out about technical issues. It's exciting because you're putting stuff on the screen with Tom Cruise that's never been seen before.

Updated Date: 10 October 2021, 06:54

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