Oscar nominee Will Smith has been tapped to host National Geographic’s One Strange Rock, a global event series created by Darren Aronofsky (mother!, Black Swan) and producer Jane Root (America The Story of Us, The 80s: The Decade That Made Us).
The 10-part series is set to premiere on National Geographic in March 2018.
“I am thrilled to have Will Smith on board to guide our series,” stated Darren Aronofsky. “His charisma, intelligence and humanity will add greatly to the project, helping welcome viewers into this unique narrative about the mind-blowing wonders that make life on Earth possible.”
“By pairing the incomparable, out-of-this-world, global appeal of Will Smith with our rock-star astronauts, who literally went out of this world, we tell the incredible story of the complexities of our planet,” added Tim Pastore, president, original programming and production, National Geographic. “With the distinctive storytelling from Aronofsky and Root, One Strange Rock will be an incredible visual treat, taking audiences from the microscopic to the cosmic, leaving viewers to see and appreciate our planet as never before.”
“Our goal here is to reimagine factual programming and give viewers a cinematic spectacle like they have never seen before,” said Jane Root. “We’ll unpack the science behind our marvelous planet, and provide stories that are entertaining and provocative; and who better to do that with than the visionary Darren Aronofsky and his partners at Protozoa Pictures, the incomparable Will Smith and our team of legendary astronauts?”
Will Smith will host the series which will feature astronauts sharing their personal experiences. Among the astronauts set to appear in One Strange Rock are:
• Chris Hadfield – The first Canadian astronaut to command the International Space Station and the only Canadian to have ever boarded the Russian Space Station Mir while in orbit, Hadfield has left Earth three times and spent a total of 166 days in space.
• Jeff Hoffman – Logging 21.5 million miles in space, Brooklyn-born astronomer and former astronaut Hoffman has flown to space five times, one of which was the first mission to reach the Hubble Space Telescope.
• Mae Jemison – Former astronaut Jemison just celebrated the 25th anniversary of her mission to space aboard the Endeavour, making history as the first African-American woman to go to space.
• Jerry Linenger – Former astronaut Linenger, who survived the most severe fire ever aboard an orbiting spacecraft, spent nearly five months on the Russian space station Mir and logged 50 million miles on that mission alone.
• Mike Massimino – The first person to send a tweet from space, former astronaut Massimino flew on two space shuttle missions to repair the Hubble Space Telescope.
• Leland Melvin – The only person drafted into the NFL to have flown to space, former astronaut Melvin blasted off to space twice and logged more than 565 hours there.
• Nicole Stott – Known as the “Artistic Astronaut,” former astronaut and aquanaut Stott, who became the first astronaut to paint in space, logged 104 days in space and nearly three weeks on Aquarius undersea habitat.
• Peggy Whitson – Astronaut Whitson just completed her third journey to space, setting a NASA record for the most days in space — 665.
The Plot: One Strange Rock is the extraordinary story of Earth — our curiously calibrated, interconnected planet — and why it is special and uniquely brimming with life among a largely unknown but harsh cosmic arena. Anchoring the series is an elite group of astronauts who see Earth’s bigger picture; they provide unique perspectives and relate personal memoirs of our planet seen from space.