Monaco Premiere: “Above and Beyond: NASA’s Journey to Tomorrow”

To Celebrate NASA’s 60th Anniversary, Monaco Will Host US Astronauts, Aerospace Experts, and the Premiere of “Above and Beyond: NASA’s Journey to Tomorrow”

Under the High Patronage of H.S.H. Prince Albert II, events will focus on the future of air and space travel

This Thanksgiving the Principality of Monaco will host NASA legends from the US space shuttle program at a forum to mark the agency’s 60th anniversary, featuring a special screening of the Discovery documentary “Above and Beyond: NASA’s Journey to Tomorrow” from Academy Award nominee and Emmy Award winning film maker, Rory Kennedy.

Held under the patronage of His Serene Highness Prince Albert II of Monaco, this initiative of the Embassy of Monaco in Washington, D.C. will start at 5:00pm with a screening of the film in English with French subtitles (free and open to the public with advanced reservations). It will be followed by an hour-long discussion with some of today’s eminent aerospace leaders on the subject of air and space exploration with a focus on the importance of international cooperation (

Panelists include crew from the January 1986 Columbia Space Shuttle mission and one of NASA’s first women astronauts:

  • Captain Robert “Hoot” Gibson, former US naval officer, test pilot, aeronautical engineer, retired NASA astronaut who flew aboard the space shuttles Columbia, Atlantis, and Endeavour;
  • General Charles Bolden, former NASA Administrator, Major-general of the US Marine Corps and NASA astronaut;
  • Senator Bill Nelson, Democrat Senator from Florida to the US Congress since 2001, Columbia payload specialist;
  • Dr. George “Pinky” Nelson, US physicist, astronomer, scientific educator and former NASA astronaut;
  • Dr. Franklin Chang Diaz, Costa Rican-born astronaut who crewed a record 7 flights aboard NASA space shuttles;
  • Dr. Rhea Seddon, surgeon, NASA shuttle crew member, one of the first women accepted into the Astronaut Corps;
  • Mr. Guy Beutelschies, Lockheed Martin’s vice president, Commercial and Civil Space; and
  • Dr. Ilhami Aygun, president and CEO of SSI-MonacoSat.

“The crew of Space Shuttle Columbia’s 1986 launch is extremely honored to be taking part in this exciting program. We are so very grateful to His Serene Highness Prince Albert II for inviting us,” said Captain Robert “Hoot” Gibson.

The panel moderator is Mr. Mesut Ciceker, director, EMEA for Lockheed Martin Space, and Master of Ceremonies is Mr. Christian Moore, President of Media, SSI-Monaco. The documentary will be introduced by the Director of the Smithsonian Institution’s National Air and Space Museum and former NASA chief scientist, Dr. Ellen R. Stofan. Other esteemed NASA alumni expected to attend include French astronauts Patrick Baudry and Jean-Francois Clervoy.

“Earth science and space exploration have impacted humankind in countless positive and tangible ways. Monaco is proud to once again bring together such distinguished international panelists to share their experiences, and the Monaco screening of “Above and Beyond” provides the perfect launch pad to celebrate 60 extraordinary years of NASA,” said Her Excellency Maguy Maccario Doyle, Monaco’s ambassador to the U.S.A. and the event convener.

“This will be the second such forum initiated by the Embassy. The first, in 2016, premiered “The Last Man on the Moon” (, and underscores the Principality’s interests in aerospace technology and exploration, given that SSI-Monaco, with partner Thales Alenia Space, launched its first communications satellite MonacoSat-1 with SpaceX’s Falcon9 launcher into geostationary transfer orbit on April 27, 2015 ( A second satellite MonacoSat-2 is being planned by SSI-MonacoSat with an expected launch date by 2021-22.”

“I am honoured that the Embassy has chosen to screen “Above and Beyond” during this prestigious gathering of NASA astronauts and others who have dedicated their lives to understanding more about our planet and the world around us,” says Kennedy. “Our goal in making this film was to present a record of the great accomplishments of NASA over the past 6 decades, and to look forward to its next great missions.  From landing rovers on Mars to measuring the health of our planet, NASA’s work is not only awe-inspiring but essential to our future well-being.”

In Above and Beyond: NASA’s Journey To Tomorrow, Rory Kennedy commemorates the Apollo program’s remarkable journey to the Moon, and the creativity of those who worked to achieve it, and most importantly, what we choose to do with our heritage of achievement,” said Dr. Stofan, the John and Adrienne Mars Director of the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum.

Lockheed Martin has a long legacy of supporting NASA’s deep space exploration, including every mission to Mars since 1971. From the building of the world’s first weather satellite to the current fleet of GPS satellites, Lockheed Martin Space innovations provide critical communications, science, navigation, and weather data to the world. Lockheed Martin is proud to help celebrate Monaco’s commitment to the space community, building on the success of the SSI-MonacoSat and the plans of the establishment of the Monaco Space Agency.

The organizers acknowledge and thank the following:
The Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation & The Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation – USA
Lockheed Martin
Monaco Tourism and Convention Bureau (DTC)
Monaco Asset Management
Space Systems International – MonacoSat
The Lady Monika Bacardi Foundation

When & Where:
Thursday, November 22, 2018. Film starts at 5:00pm, panel discussion from 6:45pm, Auditorium Rainier III, Boulevard Louis II, 98000 Monaco

Admission & Reservations:
Free and open to the public but advanced reservations essential. Limited seating. Reservations by November 18 at or RSVP +377 93 10 40 61

Click here to download your invitation

Monaco Mediax, +377 93 10 40 61,

Press contacts:
In Monaco Carole Mandorlo, Monaco Mediax +377 93 10 40 53,
In the USA Elle Berdy, Embassy of Monaco +1 917 689 7424,


Maj. Gen. Charles F. Bolden, Jr.
Pilot, space shuttle Columbia (1986)
Dr. George Nelson
Mission Specialist, space shuttle Columbia (1986)
Captain Robert L. Gibson (USN-Ret.)
Commander, space shuttle Columbia (1986)
Dr. Rhea Seddon
One of NASA’s first women Astronauts
Captain Michael Lopez-Alegria (USN-Ret.)
Four-time  NASA astronaut
Mr. Guy Beutelschies
VP, Communication Satellite Solutions
Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company
Dr. Ilhami Aygun
President & CEO
SSI – Monaco S.A.M.


Mr. Mesut Ciceker
Head of Sales, EMEA Region, Civil Commercial Space
Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company

Master of Ceremonies

Mr. Christian Moore
President, Media
SSI – Monaco

The Embassy also welcomes the following Pioneers and Innovators and NASA alumni:

Buzz Aldrin
NASA Astronaut
One of the 1st two humans to set foot on the Moon in 1969
Jean-François Clervoy
European Space Agency
Patrick Baudry
Cosmonaut and Astronaut
UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador