'Interstellar' Teams with XCOR Aerospace for Free Space Trip Contest

'Interstellar' Theatrical Poster 2
A theatrical poster for the space epic "Interstellar," which is directed by Christopher Nolan and stars Matthew McConaughey (shown here). The film will be released in select IMAX theaters on Nov. 5, 2014 and throughout the United States two days later. (Image credit: Paramount Pictures)

Buying a ticket to see the upcoming sci-fi epic "Interstellar" could score you a seat aboard a real spaceship.

People who purchase their "Interstellar" tickets through the online site Fandango from today (Oct. 31) through Dec. 1 have a chance to win a free suborbital spaceflight aboard XCOR Aerospace's Lynx Mark II rocket plane. Seats aboard the vehicle normally sell for $100,000.

"Frontiers are not opened by the faint-hearted," XCOR CEO Jeff Greason said in a statement. "'Interstellar' offers those of us working to create a hopeful future for humanity in space the chance to stop and enjoy the vistas of that future for a few hours, and this flight makes it possible for one more person to take the journey with us aboard Lynx."

The "Interstellar" sweepstakes is organized by Fandango, Paramount Pictures, XCOR and the online tech magazine Motherboard. To learn more about the rules and prizes, go to http://www.fandango.com/sweepstakesrules/interstellar (opens in new tab).

"Interstellar" is directed by Christopher Nolan and stars Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Jessica Chastain and Michael Caine. In the film, agricultural crises threaten humanity's existence on Earth, so a band of explorers led by McConaughey's character embark on an extragalactic journey to find a new home for our species. Advance screenings start in IMAX theaters on Nov. 5, and the movie will be released throughout the country on Nov. 7.

The one-passenger Lynx space plane is designed to fly to an altitude of about 62 miles (100 kilometers). People who buy a ticket won't complete a lap around Earth, but they will enjoy s a few minutes of weightlessness and a great view of Earth against the blackness of space, XCOR representatives say.

Lynx could be up and running within the next year or so, XCOR representatives have said. Another suborbital space plane, Virgin Galactic's six-passenger SpaceShipTwo, had been on roughly the same schedule before suffering a tragic accident during a test flight Friday (Oct. 31) that killed one pilot and injured the other.

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Mike Wall
Senior Space Writer

Michael Wall is a Senior Space Writer with Space.com (opens in new tab) and joined the team in 2010. He primarily covers exoplanets, spaceflight and military space, but has been known to dabble in the space art beat. His book about the search for alien life, "Out There," was published on Nov. 13, 2018. Before becoming a science writer, Michael worked as a herpetologist and wildlife biologist. He has a Ph.D. in evolutionary biology from the University of Sydney, Australia, a bachelor's degree from the University of Arizona, and a graduate certificate in science writing from the University of California, Santa Cruz. To find out what his latest project is, you can follow Michael on Twitter.