October 18, 2021

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First movie in space: Russia will launch a camera crew for the International Space Station on Tuesday (can be watched live) |  Science and Ecology |  DW

First movie in space: Russia will launch a camera crew for the International Space Station on Tuesday (can be watched live) | Science and Ecology | DW

A Russian Soyuz rocket will take a director and actress to the International Space Station (ISS) on Tuesday (05.2021) to shoot the first feature film in space.

The launch from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan is scheduled for 10.55 a.m. CST. Director Klim Shipenko, 38, and actress Julia Peresild, 37, will be accompanied by a Russian cosmonaut.

A press conference at the Russian launch facilities in the Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan, Monday, October 4, 2021.

The small film crew has twelve days to shoot. The film, whose working title is “The Challenge,” is about a doctor who must treat an astronaut whose condition is too serious on a flight back to Earth.

Tom Cruise in space?

The filming budget is kept secret. Russian space agency Roskosmos announced the project Right after NASA announced plans to film on the International Space Station with Hollywood star Tom Cruise for the “Mission Impossible” action movie series.

“It’s an experience,” said the film’s director, Klim Shpenko. “I don’t have anyone to ask for advice. I don’t have a photographer who asks me how to shoot with window light,” he told a news conference.

Actress Yulia Peresild, who underwent rigorous training with the director to get used to weightlessness, said Monday that acting and astronauts are “oppositions.” “We’ll see if I can combine the two,” he added.

Tech challenges in space

Filming the film will require several technical challenges. Shipenko will have to deal with the camera, sound and lighting on his own, dealing with the relatively cramped conditions of the Russian part of the International Space Station.

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“We will see what can be filmed in these conditions,” the director said, adding: “Some things will work, others will not. Three professional astronauts stationed on the International Space Station will also participate in the film.

A fox next to a Soyuz-2.1a booster rocket with the Soyuz MS-19 spacecraft for the 66th Expedition crew to the International Space Station (ISS).

A fox next to a Soyuz-2.1a booster rocket with the Soyuz MS-19 spacecraft for the 66th Expedition crew to the International Space Station (ISS).

“The script changes all the time and I’m learning my lines again, it’s really difficult,” mission commander Anton Shkaplerov joked on Monday.

For him, the flight will also be a test of whether future non-specialists can be sent into space in the event of a medical emergency, for example.

The actress and director has been trained in four months, and “we might be able to shorten the acrobat’s training period to send him into space,” according to Shkaplerov.

FEW (AFP, dpa)