A Russian actor and film director returned safely to Earth after wrapping up 12 days of shooting scenes on the International Space Station. The Russian space agency, Roscosmos, telecasted a live footage of Yulia Peresild and Klim Shipenko landing on Kazakhstan’s steppe early on Sunday.
The film-makers had blasted off from the Russia-leased Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan earlier this month, travelling to the ISS with 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 surgeon who is dispatched to the ISS to save a cosmonaut. Shkaplerov, 49, along with the two Russian cosmonauts who were already aboard the ISS, are said to have cameo roles in the film.
According to The New York Times, The Challenge will be the first feature-length fiction movie shot in space. The movie is about a Russian doctor who rushes to save the life of a cosmonaut aboard the International Space Station.
Roscosmos tweeted that the descent vehicle of the crewed spacecraft Soyuz MS-18 is standing upright and is secure. “The crew are feeling goodk!” However, a NASA spokesperson told TASS that when the Russian flight controllers on Friday conducted a test on the Soyuz MS-18 spacecraft the ship’s thruster fired unexpectedly and destabilized the ISS for 30 minutes.
Over the years, a number of film producers and directors have shown interest in going up to space for shoots. A 2002 IMAX documentary that Tom Cruise narrated was shot on board the space station. Apogee of Fear, a 2012 science fiction film clocking in at about eight minutes, was also filmed in space by entrepreneur and space tourist Richard Garriott.
In 2020, Tom Cruise and director Doug Liman revealed that they were working together on a movie to be filmed in space, with NASA’s cooperation. The project is being developed in collaboration with Elon Musk’s SpaceX.
However, Russia is the first country to shoot a feature film in space. Peresild and Shipenko, who are well-known in Russia, were selected after the country’s space agency, Roscosmos, opened a competition for applicants in November ((2020?)). Peresild has appeared in a number of Russian films and TV series, while Shipenko’s 2020 movie “Serf” was one of Russia’s highest-grossing films.
They underwent rigorous training ahead of their space jaunt. Along with understudies, the actor and the director prepared by doing centrifuge and vibration stand tests, training flights in zero gravity, and parachute training, all of which were covered by Channel One.