First Orbit: FREE Download to Celebrate the 50th Anniversary of Human Spaceflight

First Orbit: A Film by Chris Riley
Created to Celebrate the First 50 Years of Human Spaceflight
FREE to Download and Share

On 12th April 2011 it will be 50 years to the day since Yuri Gagarin climbed into his space ship and was launched into space. It took him just 108 minutes to orbit Earth and he returned as the World's very first space man. To mark this historic flight film maker Chris Riley of In the Shadow of the Moon fame, has teamed up with the European Space Agency, and the Expedition 26/27 crew of the International Space Station, to created a new film of what Gagarin first witnessed fifty years ago. By matching the orbital path of the Space Station, as closely as possible, to that of Gagarin's Vostok 1 spaceship and filming the same vistas of the Earth through the new giant cupola window, astronaut Paolo Nespoli, and documentary film maker Christopher Riley, have captured a new digital high definition view of the Earth below, half a century after Gagarin first witnessed it. Weaving these new views together with historic, recordings of Gagarin from the time, (subtitled in English) and an original score by composer Philip Sheppard, they have created a spellbinding film to share with people around the world on this historic anniversary.

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Thanks to a partnership with YouTube First Orbit will be shared with the World in a special global streaming event on the 12th April. The Yuri's Night network will also be showing the film at over 120 parties around the world that day. If you would like to watch it at one of these events then please contact the organizers directly through the Yuri's Night clickable party map.

If you are in Melbourne you can join the Yuri's Night celebrations at VSSEC and be one of the first people to see First Orbit. This free event is being held in collaboration with The Space Association of Australia. Registration is required as seats are limited. Email bookings@vssec.vic.edu.au to book a seat.

After the 12th April First Orbit will be available for download at different resolutions, so people can chose the file size that best suits their platform (see below). However, because First Orbit lasts just under 108 minutes, the files are very large.

1. ipod / iphone sized file 640 x 320 : 800 MB
2. domestic projector / monitor 1920 x 1980 (low bit rate): 2.2 GB
3. maximum resolution as supplied to us from the space station 1920 x 1080 (higher bit rate): 8.5 GB