The Challenge is known as Vyzov or Doctor’s House Cell is a Russian space docudrama film by Kim Shipenko. This will be the first-ever feature-length fiction film shot in outer space. The film will be launched aboard the Soyuz MS-19 manned spacecraft to the ISS, from the Baikonur Spaceport. A representative of the Energia Rocket and Space Corporation that is part of Russia’s State Space Agency Roscosmos has stated that the manned spacecraft will land on the Earth with the crew on the 17th of October by the ISS Flight Program.
Story of “The Challenge”
On 6th May 2020, an announcement was made by NASA that Tom Cruise is planning to film on the ISS. Though NASA was very excited about this particular project, the Russian Space Energy Roscosmos moved faster and set its plan in motion. Russia made an announcement last week stating that a commission of Medical and Safety experts have approved the plan for an actress and a director to travel off to ISS in October to launch the movie.
The title owned by the movie is “Vyzov” which translates to “ The Challenge”. It is a joint project by Roscosmos, Channel One, and the Yellow & Black and White film studio.
The Plot Of The Movie
Cosmonaut Ivanov loses consciousness in the spacecraft fight. A woman doctor who has zero experience had to go to space to save the cosmonaut’s life. The doctor had to save the cosmonaut’s life by doing the same things she would have done in normal conditions within an Operative Room but here, in the spacecraft, the environment was different and difficult as there was zero gravity in the space. The film revolves around the fictional situation and the incidents that happen after that.
In the first half of the movie, the doctor goes from training to be in space and the second part will capture how her mission of saving the life of the cosmonaut follows. According to the maker of the film, Kim Shipenko, the idea behind this particular project is to give an experience of the space to people who have never been there.
Background And Pre-production
On May 14th, 2021, the Interagency Committee approved the composition of the ISS main and alternate crews for the period of 2021-2023. Cosmount Anton Skaplerov ( Commander ) and other crew members of the film flew to the ISS on the Soyuz MS-19. The crew members began the training at Yuri Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Centre on the 24th of May 2021. On the 23rd of July, the prime crewmembers participated in a four-hour stimulation inside a Soyuz replica wearing a Sokol Suit. The backup crew completed the same process on the 28th of July. The spacecraft had its prelaunch on the 30th of July and on the 31st of August, the medical committee stated that all the crew members whether prime or backup are healthy for space flight. The filming equipment to be used was launched on Progress MS-17.
The Cast Of The Film
Yulia Peresild played the role of Zhenya, a heart surgeon, and the female cosmonaut. Klim Shipenko played the role of an astronaut. Alyona Mordovia will be seen as a woman astronaut. Vladimir Mashkov is playing a cardiac surgeon in the movie. Other than these actors, Tatyana Dogileva, Sergey Baranov, Polina Agureeva, Maksim Matveyev will be seen. Oleg Novitsky will be playing the role of Ivanov, the sick astronaut. Cameos are done by Anton Shkaplerov, Pytor Dubrov, and Marl T. Vande Hei. The crew was in space for 11 days, 22 hours, and 13 minutes.
The film is directed by Klim Shipenko, the screenplay is done by Bakur Bakuradze and Klim Shipenko. The film is produced by Denis Zhalinsky, Eduard Iloyan, Dmitry Rogozin, Aleksey Trotsyuk, Sergey Titinkov, Vitaly Shlyappo, and Konstantin Ernst.
Creation Of The Film
Three thousand applications were submitted for the main role. The numbers were reduced to 20 or 30 by the end and finally, Yulia Peresild got the role. This film required a lot of preparation, Kilm Shiepenko was trained intensively to lose 15 kg of weight. As the main part of the film was to be shot in a spacecraft, he performed the work of an operator, make-up artist, and even production designer. The footage filmed in the space will be 35 minutes in the film.
Ernest stated that the motivation of the filmmakers is to confirm the leadership of Russia in the space sector for restoring the prestige of the cosmonaut profession among the young generation. The showcase done by the film is expected to motivate people about space who have never been there and about the importance of doctors and scientists in space as well.
The MS-19 spacecraft was launched on the 5th of October from the Baikonur Cosmodrome. The whole development of this project will be covered under the framework of the Evening Urgant Program, the members belonging to Evening Urgant Programme were moved to the cosmodrome a week before its launch.
The lead actor of the movie worked as an actress as well as a wardrobe director in the film. Talking about her experience during the preparations to shoot in space she stated that she has psychological distress while adapting to the very different routine that was very tough and strict as of a military one. The Director of the film, Shipenka said that doing any kind of exercise inside the spacecraft was very difficult for him because the space was already very tight considering the height he has and he would have to sit for seven to eight hours a day.
Schedule Of The Film
Cosmonaut Shkaplerov mentioned that the crew of the film is expected to spend 12 days aboard ISS out of those 12 days, 10 days will be devoted to filming the movie. He also added that the crew members should be alright because the space station is like a big house with 15 modules and at least seven people can stay there.
The undocking of the Soyuz MS-18 spacecraft from the ISS is scheduled at 04:11:30 Moscow time (06:41 AM IST) and the landing is scheduled at 07:36:44 Moscow Time (10:06 AM IST) on the 17th of October.
The movie, according to Rogozin, is an experiment to see if Roscosmos can make two ordinary people fly in just three to four months. This will be the first-ever movie that will feature a full-length space experience for common individuals. The movie will also show a heart surgery being done in space that will be very exciting to see for curious youngsters and fellow doctors. The movie is made in vision to showcase the need for professionals in outer space and the need for the time being. It will also deal with the challenges that are there when an individual is in outer space. The working conditions and the running stress will give viewers a very worthwhile viewing experience.