Who said spending a year in space doesn’t have its perks?
Us mortals have to wait until Oct. 2 to see Ridley Scott’s The Martian, but the crew aboard the International Space Station were already treated to a one-of-a-kind screening of the new film. It’s fitting, too, since NASA has its own aspirations to one day reach the Red Planet—something the agency believes will most definitely happen within our lifetime, which is both terrifying and astounding.
Getting to screen the film was a special treat for two astronauts in particular aboard the ISS; Scott Kelly, from the U.S., and Mikhail Kornienko, from Russia, have both committed to spending a full year up in space to study the effects of spaceflight on the human body. The test of endurance will provide scientists with data as we figure out whether or not humans can survive a trip to Mars; for context, it took NASA’s Curiosity rover 253 days to reach the alien world.
Based on Scott Weir’s novel of the same name, The Martian follows an astronaut, Mark Watney, as he struggles to survive on the Red Planet after being mistakenly left behind during a mission. The film has been screened a few times already, and it has been praised for its scientific accuracy. NASA has actually said it’s the most scientifically accurate film the agency has ever advised on. And if it receives the approval from actual astronauts in space, you know it’s a pretty good movie.
The Martian hits theaters on Oct. 2.