Astronauts on set: Space station could host wave of TV shows and movies

“We are finally able to open our doors to individuals and allow others to experience the magic of living and working in space,” said Dana Weigel, deputy director of the space station at NASA. “The dream is really to give everyone access to space, and that’s a pretty exciting starting point here.”

The producers of Discovery’s “Who Wants to Be an Astronaut” expect the winner to be on board for the second Axiom mission to the space station, which could take off six or seven months after the first. As of yet, a deal between Team Discovery and Axiom has not been finalized, and NASA has yet to select Axiom to lead the second private space tourism flight.

The NASA-run portion of the station could accommodate two private astronaut missions per year, space agency officials said, and other companies are also interested in participating.

“We are seeing great interest in private astronaut missions, even outside of Axiom,” Ms. Weigel said. “At this point, the demand exceeds what we actually think the opportunities on the resort will be.”

Yet on Tuesday Axiom announced two people who would be in the seats for this second mission: Peggy Whitson, a former NASA astronaut who now works for Axiom, will be the commander, and John Shoffner, a fare-paying passenger who made his fortune in as a company manager that manufactures conduits for fiber optic cables, will serve as the pilot for the mission.

Dr Whitson, who holds the record for the most cumulative time in space by a NASA astronaut – 665 days – joined Axiom as a consultant a year ago, hoping to return to space. and add to his record. “Yes, most definitely,” she said. “It was the carrot.

Mr Peterson said plans for the Discovery show stemmed from discussions with Axiom in early 2020 and that it would be a “premium documentary” and less “Survivor” or other TV contests. ruthless reality.

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