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PROJECTS | 1994 | THE RACE TO THE MOON

THE RACE TO THE MOON

Author:
Juergen Ast | Karlheinz Eyermann

Director:
Juergen Ast

Commissioning Editor:
Martin Huebner

Duration:
45'

Production:
astfilm productions | for MDR // ARD

"That's one small step for a man, one giant step for mankind". 25 years ago, Neil Armstrong was the first man to set his foot on the Moon. July 20th 1969, the most horrible day in the history of soviet space travel. The first man on the Moon - an American. Sputnik, Gagarin, Tereshkova - the Russians were the number one every time. Now, the prestigious duel is lost, the No. 1 enemy in the class struggle, the Americans, win the battle of technologies.

How did it happen? Did Russia prepare a manned-mission to the Moon at all? Newspapers in the Soviet Union gave the impression that Russia never had any plans for such a mission. Only 25 years later, after the breakdown of the Soviet Union, the true story can be told. It was one of the greatest Soviet state secrets, the manned lunar programs and plans of the USSR.

With the successful mission of Apollo 11 the Russian plans for a manned flight to the Moon had failed. By orders, the whole equipment, the spacecrafts and the moon-rockets were destroyed. No traces should remain. The so called "Luna-Cosmonauts", after years of special training they had to keep silent - at that time forever. The race to the moon was lost and from then on it had never existed. Till today the public did never learn anything of such a Soviet mission to the Moon.

The documentary-film reconstructs the disaster of the Soviets in the context of the successful American Apollo missions. It tells the failures, the risks that were taken and the mistakes. "The Race to the Moon" - a look behind the scenes of well kept secrets and insights in one of the most exciting stories of modern space travel.