College of Science and Visiting Filmmakers Series present Woman in Motion

Monday, October 16, 2023 6:00 PM to 8:30 PM EDT
Johnson Center, Cinema


Join us for a screening and discussion of Woman In Motion: Nichelle Nichols, Star Trek and the Remaking of NASA. 


In 1977, NASA struggled to recruit scientists, engineers and astronauts for their new Space Shuttle Program. That's when Nichelle Nichols, Star Trek's Lt. Uhura, challenged NASA by asking the question: "Where are my people?" And so she embarked on a four-month campaign to recruit the first Black, Latino and Asian men and women to fly in space.

Todd Thompson's documentary tells the story of that campaign, as it builds on and expands Nichols' career, and her life's mission. "While traveling around the country to recruit BIPOC and women as astronauts, she insisted upon astronaut training to make sure she was fully informed while speaking with potential recruits," writes Carla Renata. "She also butted heads with the US Government over the manner in which she was recruiting and warned NASA that if at any time they exploited her celebrity and did not keep their word, she would put the organization on blast through the media." 

"I have had letters and have met and come in contact with young women who have said to me, 'You came on and I thought My God there's somebody there representing me." Nichelle Nichols in Zach Seemayer, "How Nichelle Nichols' Groundbreaking 'Star Trek' Role Paved the Way for Others & Even Changed NASA," ET, Feb 22, 2022

"Luckily, when Nichols finished her mission [to recruit astronauts at NASA], she had to produce a final report, which turned out to be about 400 pages long that we were able to get our hands on. It was almost like having the world's encyclopedia in your hands because everything was incorporated into this document." Read interview with director Todd Thompson by Elizabeth Howell, "New documentary explores 'Star Trek,' Nichelle Nichols and NASA's 1970s astronaut search," Space, May 2021. 

See trailer: 

Our screening will be followed by a guided discussion. 

This event is free and open to the public. 

Presented by College of Science; Visiting Filmmakers Series; College of Visual and Performing Arts; Film at MasonEnglish Department; History and Art History; University Life; and Women and Gender Studies. 

#VisitingFilmmakersSeries #FilmAtMason #CollegeOfScience #StarTrek

For more information: 

Rebecca Jones, 

Cynthia Fuchs, Director, Visiting Filmmakers Series at Mason; Director, Film at Mason

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