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DRAGON SPACE
"Gravity" director wants China to take him into space
by Xinhua writers Du Jie, Meng Jing
Beijing (XNA) Nov 26, 2013


File image.

The outer space blockbuster "Gravity," which took four-and-a-half years to make, will probably be director Alfonso Cuaron's first and last space movie.

But he did express a willingness to explore space for real, if possible, with the help of the Chinese government.

"I know that I will never do another space movie. It took too long. But I would go to space as soon as I was invited," Cuaron told Xinhua in an exclusive interview given while he was in Beijing promoting "Gravity," which debuted on the Chinese mainland on Tuesday.

"So I'll keep on pleading. Maybe then Chinese authorities will want to send me to space. I would be very happy to accept the invitation, very honored," he said.

A Chinese space station plays a pivotal role in the film. But when Cuaron was co-writing the script with his son five years ago, China's first space lab module, the Tiangong-1, had yet to be launched.

"We started to write the script before the Hollywood craze regarding the Chinese market began. Everything that you see in the film is something from the original screenplay," he said.

The director said he added the Chinese space station to the script because he wanted to ensure that the film would be up to date, as he believes China is at the forefront of space exploration.

The Chinese space station in the film isn't actually floating in space yet. The space lab module Tiangong-1 was launched in September 2011 and the country is expected to establish a space lab around 2016 and a manned space station around 2020. ' "We borrowed some of the designs for the Chinese station that is planned for 2016. We didn't look at the module that's up there right now. We wanted to give an example of what is it going to be like in the very near future," Cuaron said.

"Gravity" opened this year's Venice International Film Festival in August. It has grossed 240 million U.S. dollars in North America and exceeded 500 million dollars worldwide.

In the film, Dr. Ryan Stone, played by Sandra Bullock, travels into space along with veteran astronaut Matt Kowalski, played by George Clooney.

Their mission goes awry when an explosion creates a cloud of space debris near their craft, forcing them to use their ingenuity to find a way back home.

Source: Xinhua News Agency

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