Watch the explosive new trailer for astronaut action film 'ISS' (video)

The International Space Station has been a beacon of global cooperation and scientific research since it became operational in 2000. But what if this orbital base became a vantage point to witness the nuclear obliteration of our planet below?

Thus begins the premise of a new sci-fi film from Bleecker Street titled, "I.S.S.," where mutually assured destruction caused by an all-out atomic blitz on Earth transforms the International Space Station into a claustrophobic combat zone when American astronauts and Russian cosmonauts must each try to take control of the orbital for their own country.

Starring the Academy Award-winning actress Ariana DeBose ("West Side Story") and directed by Gabriela Cowperthwaite ("Blackfish"), this compelling project was screened at this year's Tribeca Film Festival and is now primed for a theatrical release on Jan. 19, 2024.

Related: ISS astronauts watch Russian cargo ship burn up in Earth's atmosphere (photos)

Poster for "I.S.S." (Image credit: Bleecker Street)

Here's the official synopsis:

"Tensions flare in the near future aboard the International Space Station as a worldwide conflict breaks out on Earth. Reeling from this, the astronauts receive orders from the ground: take control of the station by any means necessary. Director Gabriela Cowperthwaite, working with Nick Shafir's Blacklist script, brings together a stellar cast that includes Academy Award winner Ariana DeBose, Chris Messina, Pilou Asbaek, John Gallagher Jr., Costa Ronin, and Masha Mashkova, in a high-stakes thriller set entirely in the confines of the ISS as astronauts are called to duty in fateful and terrifying ways."

A similar premise was played out in director Peter Hyams' "2010: The Year We Make Contact," when American and Russian scientists and astronauts out to investigate the derelict spaceship from "2001: A Space Odyssey" learned of a political firestorm on Earth and had to choose sides after encountering an alien presence on Europa.

While bursting atom bombs might not appear as a tapestry of brilliant orange blooms from the height of 250 miles (400 km) up, and one might wonder exactly why the ISS would still be a valuable asset after total armageddon strikes, it's Hollywood, after all, so a healthy suspension of disbelief is required to swallow the plot and simply have fun.

"I.S.S." arrives in theaters on Jan. 19, 2024.

Join our Space Forums to keep talking space on the latest missions, night sky and more! And if you have a news tip, correction or comment, let us know at:

Jeff Spry
Contributing Writer

Jeff Spry is an award-winning screenwriter and veteran freelance journalist covering TV, movies, video games, books, and comics. His work has appeared at SYFY Wire, Inverse, Collider, Bleeding Cool and elsewhere. Jeff lives in beautiful Bend, Oregon amid the ponderosa pines, classic muscle cars, a crypt of collector horror comics, and two loyal English Setters.