(CNN)After filming the first movie in space, Russian actress Yulia Peresild, producer-director Klim Shipenko and cosmonaut Oleg Novitskiy have safely returned home.
After saying farewell to the rest of the astronauts and cosmonauts on the International Space Station and closing the hatch at 4:41 p.m. ET on October 16, their Soyuz MS-18 spacecraft undocked from the station at 9:14 p.m.
The spacecraft experienced deorbit burn at 11:42 p.m., and they made a parachute-assisted landing on the steppe of Kazakhstan at 12:35 a.m. ET (10:35 a.m. Kazakhstan time) on October 17.
Helicopters will retrieve the crew and deliver them to Karaganda, Kazakhstan, and then they'll head to the training base in Star City, Russia, via an aircraft.
The crew's return to Earth comes on the heels of a scheduled thruster firing test of the Soyuz spacecraft Friday morning while it was still docked with the space station. At 5:13 a.m. ET Friday, the thruster firing continued unexpectedly after the test was scheduled to end. This resulted in a loss of orientation control for the space station.
The film is being made under a commercial agreement between Roscosmos and Moscow-based media entities Channel One and studio Yellow, Black and White.
Shkaplerov will stay on the space station and return to Earth in March with NASA astronaut Mark Vande Hei and Roscosmos cosmonaut Pyotr Dubrov on the Soyuz MS-19 spacecraft. When Vande Hei lands after his 355 consecutive days on the space station, he will have completed the longest single spaceflight by an astronaut in US history, according to NASA.
Novitskiy's return to Earth on Sunday morning comes after spending 191 days in space on his third mission, and he will have logged 531 days in space across three separate flights.
In addition to Shkaplerov, Vande Hei and Dubrov, the current crew on the space station includes European Space Agency astronaut Thomas Pesquet; NASA astronauts Shane Kimbrough and Megan McArthur; and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency astronaut Akihiko Hoshide.
Filming in space
A few films have been shot on board the space station, including a 2002 IMAX documentary that Tom Cruise narrated. "Apogee of Fear," a 2012 science fiction film clocking in at about eight minutes, was also filmed in space by entrepreneur and space tourist Richard Garriott, the son of an astronaut.
But Russia has become the first nation to shoot a feature film in space.
Peresild and Shipenko, who are well-known in Russia, were selected after the country's space agency, Roscosmos, opened a competition for applicants in November ((2020?)). Peresild has appeared in a number of Russian films and TV series, while Shipenko's 2020 movie "Serf" was one of Russia's highest-grossing films.
The two civilians underwent rigorous training ahead of their space jaunt. Along with understudies, the actor and the director prepared by doing centrifuge and vibration stand tests, training flights in zero gravity, and parachute training, all of which were covered by Channel One.
Other cosmonauts on board, including Novitskiy, assisted and acted as part of the film crew since production resources were more limited in the space environment.