National Geographic has commissioned London factual indie Arrow Media for a quick-turnaround documentary that details Israel’s historic moon launch.
Tentatively titled Mission Moon-Lander, the film will document the first-ever mission to land an unmanned spacecraft, Beresheet, on the Moon by a private company.
Israeli non-profit organization SpaceIL launched its Beresheet lander into space in a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket on February 22 from Florida’s Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. The lunar-lander is expected to reach the Moon’s surface on April 11.
Should Beresheet’s mission be successful, Israel would become the fourth country – after the Soviet Union, United States and China – to land a spacecraft on the Moon.
The hour-long special will offer key insights into the mission by following the SpaceIL team and its founders – Yariv Bash, Kfir Damari and Yonatan Winetraub – as they build, launch and land their unmanned spacecraft on the Moon’s surface.
The one-off film will also blend existing archive and interviews with SpaceIL members and experts with access to SpaceIL’s footage feed, which will beam back real-time images of its journey through space.
Mission Moon-Lander (w/t) will broadcast on National Geographic this month. A definitive premiere date and time has not yet been established.
The project is executive produced by Arrow Media’s Lucie Ridout, and was commissioned by National Geographic’s Carolyn Payne.
“From the preparation and launch to landing and science on the moon, we are covering all stages of this first privately-funded mission to the moon,” said Arrow’s Ridout in a statement.
“This project demonstrates our huge experience in, and passion for, documenting all aspects of space adventure. When significant events happen, we are able to leverage our vast range of contacts in the space industry to get the right kind of access to people, footage and experts — and fast.”