06th - 11th October 2016
bande annonce

The First Astronauts

Saturday 11th October 2008 from 16h00 to 17h30
Salle 2 / Grand Amphithéâtre

Directed by
Daniel Ménter
Written by
Daniel Ménter
Produced by
WDR Filmproduktion GmbH

Documentary, Germany, 2007, 52 min

Which test pilot would freefall from atmospheric heights today?

In the late fifties, a small group of american pilotes and military doctors sketch an strange project: to fasten a basket (with its passenger) to a gigantic balloon filled with helium, and let it float up above the atmosphere to reach space. Two US Air Force pilots were selected for this experiment: David Simmons and Joseph Kittinger Jr. Once they reached the wanted height, one of them was supposed to jump off the basket, and after freefalling for a few kilometers, open his parachute...

Thanks to archival images and first had testimonies, this documentary honours this bunch of hotheads' exploits.


Debate with :

  • Michel Fournier, stuntman
  • Olivier Sanguy, chief editor for Espace Magazine