“First Orbit”: Celebrating 50th Anniversary of Yuri Gagaran’s Space Flight

To cel­e­brate the 50th anniver­sary of manned space trav­el, Attic Room Pro­duc­tions has released First Orbit, a 99-minute free film that recre­ates Yuri Gagar­in’s his­toric launch into space on April 12, 1961 — in real time. We watched the whole film, which was shot entire­ly in space from on board the Inter­na­tion­al Space Sta­tion. And it’s breath­tak­ing. We were espe­cial­ly blown away by the re-entry sequence, start­ing at about 1:10:00.

A few oth­er links you may enjoy:

Google’s April 12, 2011 home page

The mak­ing of First Orbit

Video from 1961, com­plete with syn­the­siz­ers

Gagar­in’s Life in Pic­tures, from the Russ­ian Archives

Gagar­in’s 1961 inter­view with the BBC

Boing Boing’s Xeni Jardin is tweet­ing the Yuri Gagarin gala from the Krem­lin

Final­ly, and for pure­ly per­son­al and sen­ti­men­tal rea­sons, here’s Ray Brad­bury’s heart­break­ing 1951 short sto­ry “The Rock­et Man,” the first thing we ever read that filled us with long­ing for space trav­el.

via Chris­t­ian Sci­ence Mon­i­tor

Sheer­ly Avni is a San Fran­cis­co-based arts and cul­ture writer. Her work has appeared in Salon, LA Week­ly, Moth­er Jones, and many oth­er pub­li­ca­tions. You can fol­low her on twit­ter at @sheerly.

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