WASHINGTON (PR of NASA headquarters) – Members of the public are invited to watch the free online premiere of The Color of Space, an inspirational NASA documentary that tells the stories of black Americans determined to reach for the stars.
The documentary will premiere on June 19, Sunday, June 19, a federal holiday commemorating the end of slavery in the United States. The 50-minute documentary will be available for viewing beginning at noon EDT on NASA TV, the NASA app, NASA social media channels, and the agency’s website.
The anchor of the documentary is a powerful and thought-provoking conversation between seven current and former black astronauts, each of whom was selected to serve in NASA’s astronaut corps and train for missions in space. Current NASA astronauts Stephanie Wilson, Victor Glover, Jeanette Epps, along with retired astronauts Leland Melvin, Bernard Harris, Robert Curbeam and Bobby Satcher, spoke about their travels and motivations during a panel hosted by NASA Johnson Space Center Director Vanessa Wyche, the first black woman to lead a NASA center.
Originally held at Space Center Houston on March 25, the roundtable marks the first time the seven astronauts have come together for an official NASA event.
The agency is committed to a culture of diversity and inclusion in its astronaut corps, which increasingly reflects the American public. As America embarks on a new era of lunar exploration missions through the Artemis program, NASA has pledged to send the first woman and first person of color to the lunar surface.
The documentary also features recordings of conversations between astronauts and college students, as well as students enrolled in historically black colleges and universities. The astronauts spoke with the students about the unique path taken by black explorers within NASA, told personal stories of hope and resilience, and offered advice to the future generation of scientists, engineers and scientists. explorers.
“At NASA, we explore space and expand knowledge for the benefit of humanity. To do that, we need to attract the brightest minds that reflect the American public,” Wyche said. “In this documentary, our former and current black astronauts share their space travels and offer personal stories of courage and resilience. I hope this film inspires all future NASA engineers, scientists and explorers to reach for the stars, as we work to land the first woman and first person of color on the Moon under Artemis.
The documentary also includes rare archival footage and interviews with Guion ‘Guy’ Bluford, the first black man in space; Charlie Bolden, retired astronaut and NASA’s first black administrator; former astronauts Alvin Drew and Joan Higginbotham; and Ed Dwight, the first African American American astronaut candidate.
Black Americans contributed to the US space program before the agency was established. Although unsung heroes like the Hidden Figures have made invaluable contributions to NASA’s space program and global mission, it took many years for the first black American to break the color barrier and hold the title of astronaut. Painting a vivid picture of the tenacity and depth within the black community, the documentary’s title pays direct homage to the remarkable men and women who set out and claimed space travel.
A free, in-person screening of the documentary will take place on Saturday, June 18 at Howard University in Washington. The event will begin with a family reception and hands-on activities at 5:30 p.m., followed by the screening of the documentary at 7 p.m. Registration is required to attend and guests will be confirmed on a first come, first served basis. . For more details on how to register, click here.