Virgin Galactic's first commercial space flight will be documented by NBCUniversal. Virgin Group founder Richard Branson announced on Friday, November 8 that the television network would cover his inaugural space flight on various platforms, such as CNBC, MSNBC, NBCNews.com, Syfy, in addition to a live three-hour broadcast on "Today" hosted by Matt Lauer and Savannah Guthrie.
Branson and his adult children, Holly, 31 and Sam, 28, will travel into space on SpaceShipTwo from Virgin Galactic's terminal at Spaceport America in New Mexico. If tests and plans go according to schedule, the rocket plane with its passengers will take off next August.
"We are delighted that we are going to be working with you," British business magnate Branson told Lauer and Guthrie on "Today". "It is going to be an incredibly exciting year." Lauer was equally excited, saying, "We are very, very happy to be part of this project."
Sharon Scott, president and general manager of Peacock Productions, said in a statement, "Without a doubt, Sir Richard and his children taking the first commercial flight into space, will go down in history as one of the most memorable events on television."
"Through NBCUniversal's multiple platforms and overseas network partners, viewers from around the world will get to experience this where were you moment; we're extremely honored to chronicle Sir Richard's journey and live launch into space."
Branson added, "Virgin Galactic is thrilled that NBCUniversal will join us on our exciting first journey to space. In this first chapter of commercial space travel, we will help make space accessible and inspire countless more people to join us in the pursuit of space exploration and science innovation."
Nearly 700 people, including Leonardo DiCaprio, have booked a trip with Virgin Galactic. Lady GaGa recently announced that she would sing in a Virgin Galactic spaceship in 2015, making her the first artist to do so.