A Super Bowl ad is offering something a little more out of this world than the usual snacks, drinks and cars: a trip into space.
The ad, for the Inspiration4 mission, highlights a raffle in which the winner will get a chance to travel on top of a SpaceX rocket.
It is part of a mission funded by billionaire Jared Isaacman, who has commissioned the first ever entirely commercial journey into space.
Mr Isaacman will also pay for the seats of the three other people who will join him on his journey. One will be a customer of his company Shift4 Payments, another will be a healthcare worker from St Jude Children’s Research Hospital who has already been selected – and the last will be the winner of the raffle, the proceeds from which will go to St Jude too.
The Super Bowl ad is titled ‘Join Us’ is intended to introduce the Inspiration4 mission to the public.
It is directed by Bryce Dallas Howard, with those behind the mission noting that she has been fascinated by space since childhood, has directed episodes of The Mandalorian and is the daugher of Apollo 13 director Ron Howard. It also features a version of ‘Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star’ by Celeste, and a voice over by Octavia Spencer.
“The Inspiration4 mission gives us a historic opportunity to not only explore space but assemble a crew that represents the best of humankind’s ideals,” said Mr Isaacman in a statement about the new ad.
“It’s our intention to build a crew that reflects humanity and the diversity inherent in our society while giving back to those who need it. I want to use this moment to bring humanity together and remind people that inspiring ourselves and each other can change the course of our future.”
The ad is intended to encourage people to join in as part of that raffle. It actually gives people the chance to join two ways: the Generosity or Prosperity seat, either by donating or signing up as a customer of Mr Isaacman’s new “Shift4Shop” product.
The Generosity seat is likely to be the simplest to get involved in. All people have to do is donate at least $10 to the research hospital – which can be done from the website – though entrants can donate as much as they want, and donating more will get more “tickets” and therefore a higher chance of winning.
The other, Prosperity, seat will go to someone who signs up to use the Shift4Shop service and posts “an inspirational business story on Twitter”.
Beyond doing one of those two things, the conditions on joining are relatively simple. Entrants are told that the winner of the seat “must be physically & psychologically fit for training and spaceflight, and must meet the requirements to be admitted into related government facilities”.
Anyone interested in trying to win a space on board the mission is asked to visit Inspiration4’s website, which includes further instructions and rules for both seats.