Sandra Bullock plays opposite George Clooney in space thriller Gravity, in which their characters are suspended in space after a devastating accident. In order to get into the role of astronaut Ryan Stone, Bullock spoke with someone who actually knew what it felt like to be in zero gravity.

Bullocks’ brother-in-law got her the hook up with Catherine “Cady” Coleman after he bumped into her sister at a wine packaging facility. “[My brother-in-law] got my number to Cady, who was at the ISS at the time, and she called and I was able to literally ask someone who was experiencing the things that I was trying to physically learn,” Bullock told Fox News.

“I was able to ask her about how the body works, and what do you do, and what do I need to reteach my body physically to do that cannot happen on Earth,” she continued. “It was just a really coincidental, fortuitous thing that happened — over wine — that got me the final piece of information that I needed.”

Coleman, who has traveled through space aboard the Space Shuttle Columbia and been on the International Space Station, has logged over 4,330 hours in space. “You’re in a really unusual environment — it’s a very profound environment,” Coleman said about what it’s like out there. “The pervasive view of the Earth, and how you would see it reflected in the helmet — it’s like you can’t get away from the view.”


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Director Alphonso Cuarón, not only had the task of replicating the view from space, but also of achieving a sense of weightlessness for both Bullock and Clooney. “With wires, you can see the strain on the actors,” explained Cuarón. “Gravity is still pulling everything down.” In order to get the right effect, the actors had to rely on their strength to simulate the graceful, slowed down movements representive of traveling at zero gravity.

Gravity premiered in New York City on Tuesday night. The emotional science-fiction film will be in wide release Oct. 4 in 3D, 3D and IMAX.

– Chelsea Regan

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