Original documentary written by Andrew Chaikin, author of “A Man on the Moon,” Complete 16mm onboard footage from all flights, footage from each Gemini mission preparation, launch and recovery, plus rare bonus footage. Over 6 hours of material.
Acknowlegements: Thanks for Andrew Chaikin and Kipp Teague for their continuing support. Thanks to Benny Cheney at Johnson Space Center, Houston, Ben Grillot at the Cutting Corp, Tim and Bonnie at Bono Film and Video, Arlington, VA and Jon Aldridge at VTI, Houston.
Original Documentary: Through this one-hour program you’ll come to know the challenges met by Gemini, the triumph of the achievement, and the hardship of the danger.
Project Gemini: A Bold Leap Forward was produced and edited by Mark Gray, written by Andrew Chaikin, and narrated by John Willyard. Production assistance was provided by Jonathan Strickland.
Disc 1 Bonus Features (some bonus features are silent):
Gemini Control Panel – Sunject testing of the functionality of the Gemini spacecraft interior. Complete inventory of spacecraft controls and displays.
Spacecraft Development – Various footage detailing the development and construction of the Gemini Spacecraft.
Titan ICMB – Titan II launches, including onboard camera and stage separation.
Titan Stacking – Pad operations for Project Gemini at Pad 19.
Desert Survival Training – Astronaut desert survival training from the Gemini era.
Gus and Wally – Instrumental figures in Project Gemini, this footage is from a Rogallo wing flying session with Gus Grissom, and a parasailing session with Wally Schirra.
Gemini was an experimental program, and was heavily documented both on the ground and in flight. From preparation to recovery, an extensive film record exists covering the Gemini achievements in detail. For onboard photography, Gemini missions typically carried two 16mm cameras. Film was contained in 113-foot magazines. As the flights progressed, more and more film was carried, resulting in relatively little being exposed on the early missions, and a great deal being used on the later missions. Some of the best Earth-orbital photography ever taken from space comes from the Gemini program and helped lead to advance out early understanding of remote sensing from orbit.
The Gemini ground and onboard film contained on discs 2 and 3 are arranged by mission. Audio is from primary sources, including commentary from press briefings and air-to-ground audio. Some portions are silent. Some on-board magazings have a “frame bounce” which has been corrected where possible. Film speed has been adjusted to real time during activities, such as EVA and docking.
GT-1 April 8, 1964: Demonstrate launch vehicle performance, launch vehicle and spacecraft structural integrity, and work in tracking and guidance network. Spacecraft was not recovered, so no film was exposed onboard. Features footage of preparation and launch.
GT-2 January 19, 1965: Demonstrate reentry heat protection during maximum heating reentry. Launch and onboard film which includes footage of the Gemini spacecraft instrument panel and through-the-window photography during reentry.
GT-3 March 23, 1965: Gus Grissom, John Young, 4 hours, 52 Minutes: First manned Gemini mission. Footage of spacecraft checkout, suitup, launch. Most of the onboard footage was blank due to an improper setting on the 16mm camera. Recovery aboard U.S.S. Intrepid.
GT-4 June 3, 1965: Jim McDivitt, Ed White, 4 days, 1 hour, 56 minutes. First U.S. Spacewalk. Suitup and ingress, launch, onboard footage includes White’s EVA and Earth photography, recovery aboard U.S.S. Wasp.
GT-5 August 21, 1965: Gordon Cooper, Pete Conrad, 7 days, 22 hours, 55 minutes: Duration demonstration of nearly 8 days. Transfer and ingress, pre-launch thruster firings, launch, onboard footage includes Earth photography, recovery aboard U.S.S Lake Champlain.
GT-7 December 4, 1965: Frank Borman, Jim Lovell, 13 days, 18 hours, 35 minutes: Duration demonstration of 14 days. Rendezvous target for Gemini 6. Suitup and ingress, launch, onboard footage, recovery aboard U.S.S. Wasp.
GT-6(A) December 15, 1965: Wally Schirra, Tom Stafford, 1 day, 1 hour, 51 minutes: First successful rendezvous. Agena launch and scrub, shutdown ingress, shutdown, launch ingress, launch, onboard photography, recovery aboard U.S.S. Wasp.
GT-8 March 16, 1966: Neil Armstrong, Dave Scott, 10 hours, 41 minutes: Aborted mission after first successful docking. Preparation and agena launch, crew transfer and launch, onboard photography, recovery by U.S.S Mason.
GT-9 June 3, 1955: Tom Stafford, Gene Cernan, 3 days, 20 minutes: Spacecraft checkout, launch transfer and ingress, launch, onboard footage, recovery aboard U.S.S. Wasp.
GT-10 July 18, 1966: John Young, Michael Collins, 2 days, 22 hours, 46 minutes: EVA training, Gemini and agena preparation, crew transfer, agena launch, Gemini launch, onboard film, recovery aboard U.S.S Guadalcanal.
GT-11 September 12, 1966: Pete Conrad, Dick Gordon, 2 days, 23 hours, 17 minutes: Ingress, agena launch, Gemini launch, onboard photography, recovery aboard U.S.S Guam.
GT-12 November 11, 1966: Jim Lovell, Buzz Aldrin, 3 days, 22 hours, 34 minutes: Altitude chamber, ingress, Agena launch, Gemini launch, onboard photography, recovery aboard U.S.S. Wasp.