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In historic first, Russian film crew lands after filming aboard the ISS

MOSCOW – A Soyuz space capsule carrying a Russian cosmonaut and two filmmakers has landed after a 3.5-hour trip from the International Space Station.

The capsule, descending under a red-and-white striped parachute after entering Earth’s atmosphere, landed in the steppes of Kazakhstan at the scheduled time Saturday at 12:35 p.m. ET with cosmonaut Oleg Novitskiy, actress Yulia Peresild and director Klim Shipenko on board.

Peresild and Shipenko flew to the space station on October 5 for a 12-day stay to film segments of a film called “Challenge”, in which a surgeon played by Peresild rushes to the space station to save a member of the team. crew in urgent need of operation in orbit. Novitskiy, who spent more than six months aboard the space station, will play the role of the sick cosmonaut in the film.

After the landing, which sent plumes of dust flying high into the air, ground crews extracted the trio from the capsule and placed them in seats set up nearby as they adjusted to the ride. of gravity. They were then taken to a medical tent for examination.

They all looked healthy and happy.

Peresild smiled and held a large bouquet of white flowers as reporters gathered around her. But she said she also felt a touch of melancholy.

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“I feel a little sad today. It looked like 12 days would be a long time, but I didn’t want to leave when it was all over, ”Peresild said on state television.

The transfer to the medical tent was delayed by around 10 minutes as the crews filmed several takes of Peresild and Novitskiy in their seats, which are to be included in the film.

Other scenes remain to be shot on Earth for the film, the release date of which is uncertain.

Seven astronauts remain on board the space station: the Russians Anton Shkaplerov and Piotr Dubrovnik; Americans Mark Vande Hei, Shane Kimbrough and Megan McArthur; Thomas Pesquet of the European Space Agency and the Japanese Aki Hoshide.

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