• Bullet Train Director David Leitch was once Brad Pitt's stunt double Bullet Train

    Teddy Pendergrass offers some salient advice on his classic track Be for real, from Harold Melvin & the Bluenote's album I Miss You. Pendergrass says, reminiscing about his mother's wisdom, "chances go 'round. She said, 'The same people you see going up, you meet the same old faces coming down.'" The line implores the listener to exercise humility when dealing with people they might deem below their station. Through chance on their end or misfortune on your own, the roles might be reversed in the future. Few industries exemplify the lyric as potently as Hollywood. 

    David Leitch, director of the upcoming Bullet Train, has become one of the most in-demand filmmakers in the industry. As the director of the first John Wick, Leitch has been touted as a visionary in the field of action cinema. In Bullet Train, Leitch directs Brad Pitt, a shocking inversion of their previous relationship, as Leitch used to be Brad Pitt's stunt double

    When it came to reuniting with Pitt, Leitch said he was excited for audiences to see the superstar in a new light.

    "I think people hadn't seen Brad like this in a long time, maybe ever," the director said. "He was dying to do comedy and when we sent him this script I think he responded and saw the things that we saw in it. It has great characters, especially [his character] Ladybug. He was laughing halfway through it and said, 'I can do this. Leichty let's do it. Leitchy let's do it!'"

  • Here's what a Disney version of A Clockwork Orange would look like A Clockwork Orange

    No company is ever really too big to fail. However, Disney might be the closest any company will get to fitting the description. Prior to the acquisition of 20th Century Fox, Disney was already well on their way to owning every inch of entertainment. With Marvel, Star Wars, Pixar, and their princess content tucked safely in their portfolio, Disney is only a few studios away from having a monopoly on nostalgia.

    At this point, it'd be easier to count the IPs that Disney doesn't own. I never thought I'd live to see the day when The Simpsons and Family Guy would be under the Disney umbrella, but here we are. Any franchise or film is fair game now. 

    In the video linked above, the YouTube channel JabaToons creates an eerily, tonally accurate trailer for a straight-to VHS release of a Disney animated version of the Stanely Kubrick classic, A Clockwork Orange. 

  • Warner Brothers just pulled the plug on Batgirl Batgirl

    Even though the Marvel cinematic universe predates the DC extended universe, the latter is showing signs of deterioration, whereas the former is only building momentum. DC's struggles with constructing a rival cinematic universe to compete with Marvel truly began with their first crossover film, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. Since that gloriously mismanaged flick, DC has been playing catch-up ball. Over the last three years, barring duds like Wonder Woman 1984, DC began to offer the mildest form of competition through several competent and well-made films. Sadly, it seems like their good fortune is coming to an end.

    Fans at San Diego Comic-Con noticed that DC Comics' film presence seemed disproportionately lacking compared to Marvel's overwhelming amount of teasers and trailers. The dearth of trailers caused fans to speculate about a host of DC projects that should either be in post-production or gearing up for release. Although The Flash and Aquaman 2 were the two films most conspicuous by their absence, fans also noticed the lack of information about the (formerly) upcoming Batgirl movie. According to Variety, Warner Brothers has pulled the plug on Batgirl's release after an "irredeemable" test screening. 

    Studio insiders insist the decision to axe "Batgirl" was not driven by the quality of the film or the commitment of the filmmakers, but by the desire for the studio's slate of DC features to be at a blockbuster scale. "Batgirl" was budgeted to screen in homes on HBO Max, and not for a major global release in theaters. The initial $75 million production budget for the project, which finished principal photography earlier this year and was in post-production, reached $90 million, due in part to COVID-related delays and protocols.

  • Mr. Rogers vs The Incredible Hulk The raging beast inside

    Fred Rogers: veteran, aspiring minister, searching for a way to tap into the hidden potential that all children have. Then an accidental encounter with television alters his destiny. And now, whenever adult fans of Fred Rogers hear, "it's a beautiful day in the neighborhood," a startling metamorphosis occurs.

    Adult fans of Rogers are driven by nostalgia and pursued by existential dread. The adult fans are wanted for taxes and responsibilities they didn't ask for. Fred Rogers is believed to be dead, and he must let the world think that he is dead. Until adult fans of Mr. Rogers Neighborhood watch old clips of his work and find the remnants of Rogers' precious spirit dwelling within them. 

    In the video linked above, Fred Rogers drops by the set of The Incredible Hulk to pay a visit to Bill Bixby and Lou Ferrigno. This clip brought a smile to my face, and I hope you guys get a kick out of it too. 

  • South Korea is about to go to the moon South Korea

    I love the duality of North and South Korea. The two countries almost feel like the real-life version of the Animaniacs' "good idea, bad idea" segments. However, instead of silly gags, it's about the differences between tyranny and representative democracy. 

    No one can deny that South Korea is having a cultural moment right now. Between Parasite winning the Oscar for best picture, Squid Game becoming a global phenomenon, and bands like BTS and Blackpink ruling the music market, South Korea is in a new stratum of cultural omnipresence. Although making inroads in global culture is important, a nation's scientific progress is definitely more impactful. 

    On Tuesday, South Korea will send an unmanned probe to the Moon in the country's first lunar mission. The trip will put South Korea in rarefied air, as very few nations have ventured to the Moon. The country is targeting mid-December as the month when the craft will officially reach the Moon's orbit. 

    On Tuesday, August 2, a South Korean spacecraft carrying scientific instruments will launch from Cape Canaveral, Florida, and begin charting a course to the moon.

    The spacecraft is expected to arrive at its destination in mid-December and enter an orbit about 100 kilometers above the lunar surface, where its instruments will study the moon for at least a year, reports ScienceInsider's Dennis Normile.

    The probe is expected to measure the magnetic force above the moon's surface, search for the presence of water ice, uranium, helium-3, silicon and aluminum, and map the surface topography to find landing spots for future missions, writes Space.com's Leonard David. The spacecraft carries "a cadre of instruments that will yield important information about the Moon," Clive Neal, a lunar scientist at the University of Notre Dame who is not involved in the mission, tells ScienceInsider.

    South Korea will become just one of a handful of countries to have sent a mission to the moon. "Everybody is so happy and excited," Kyeong-ja Kim, a planetary geoscientist at the Korea Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources in Daejeon, and principal investigator for one of the craft's instruments, tells Nature News' Smriti Mallapaty.

    "It's just so cool to see more and more countries sending up their own orbiters and adding to the global understanding of what's going on on the moon," Rachel Klima, a planetary geologist at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Maryland, who is part of the research team, tells Nature News.

  • Sylvester Stallone is not happy about the new Drago movie Drago

    Sylvester Stallone can easily be associated with any number of characters. Throughout his lengthy film career, Stallone has embodied many iconic heroes that have become tethered to his name. Although the first Stallone character everyone thinks of first will be different, few will doubt how integral Rocky was to his career. Aside from performing as the now famous Italian Stallion, Stallone also wrote the film. Rocky, as a character, is essentially his creation. Unfortunately for Stallone, Rocky's producer Irwin Winkler controls both the character and the franchise. 

    A few weeks ago, Stallone made a public plea for his share of the rights from the Rocky films after voicing displeasure about the franchise's direction. The news about MGM developing a Creed spin-off, Drago, only exacerbated Stallone's feelings. In a scathing Instagram post, Stallone aimed his frustrations at Winkler and his children for "picking at the bones" of the Rocky franchise. Stallone also distances himself from Dolph Lundgren for failing to mention the spin-off plans. 

    A fortnight ago, Stallone took to Instagram to call for Winkler to give him "what's left of [his] rights back." He wrote then:

    A fortnight ago, Stallone took to Instagram to call for Winkler to give him "what's left of [his] rights back." He wrote then:

    "After IRWIN controlling ROCKY for over 47 years, and now CREED, I really would like have at least a little WHAT's LEFT of my RIGHTS back, before passing it on to ONLY YOUR CHILDREN – I believe That would be a FAIR gesture from this 93 year old gentleman."

    Now Stallone has posted afresh, commenting on the announcement of a new Drago spin-off movie, slamming both Winkler and his family, but notably reserving his affection for actor Dolph Lundgren.

    The creation of Rocky, its success at the box office and its success at the 1976 Oscars has entered film folklore but the rights to the franchise have long been a point of contention for Stallone, who was paid approximately $75k (for the screenplay and his acting fees) plus 10 net points which earned him at least $2.5 million for the first film, according to his calculation shared with Variety.

    He told the outlet he didn't push the issue of ownership rights at the time because "there was a certain code of business conduct, maybe not as much now, but back then, that you don't ruffle the feathers of the golden goose."

  • The film studio that made movies backwards

    Art and commerce are strange bedfellows. The most romantic vision of art exists outside of the idea of commerce or censorship. However, great art is rarely ever created outside of either constraint. The latter restriction can fluctuate depending on the era and country where art is begotten. In contrast, the former is perpetually tied to creation, as art is challenging to produce without money. The film medium is the one people most associate with being the intersection between art and commerce. Although some pictures are made solely for art's sake, most movies are designed to keep studios afloat through ticket sales.

    In the video above, the Royal Ocean Film Society's YouTube channel talks about American International Pictures. AIP is a fascinating studio that relied on a clever and novel marketing strategy at the time. Movies produced by American International Pictures were designed around a sensational poster first and a script last.

    Thumbnail image: Detail from the poster for AIP Pictures' 1957 classic Invasion of the Saucer Men

  • Christopher Eccleston did a Doctor Who Q&A ninth Doctor

    Underrated doesn't begin to describe the Ninth Doctor's tenure in the Tardis. Christopher Eccleston's time as the Doctor often gets overlooked when fans discuss the best modern version of the character. Eccleston's task of modernizing a character that- while firmly entrenched in British cultural memory- hadn't been relevant in a decade was a steep one. Although the black-on-black Matrix look the Ninth Doctor utilized might be the least memorable attire of the revival series, Eccleston's portrayal of a psychologically wounded veteran was harrowing and compelling. However, a contentious relationship with the BBC put the Ninth Doctor's journey on ice almost as swiftly as it was beginning to warm up. 

    Recently, Eccleston has decided to embrace his time on Doctor Who. After signing with Big Finish for a series of Ninth Doctor audio dramas, it looks like fans will finally get some more adventures with the character. In addition to more adventures, Eccleston's sunnier relationship with the Doctor Who franchise has allowed the actor to engage with the show's fanbase. In the video linked above, Eccleston sits with the audience at FedCon 30 to talk about Doctor Who.

  • Why is the Brazilian Butt Lift such a dangerous procedure?

    Watching the world's growing obsession-no pun intended-with butts is interesting from a Black perspective. I can clearly remember a time in the 90s and 2000s when having a more prominent posterior was only viewed positively in Black and Latin communities. That isn't to say the trait was only confined to those two races, but it definitely wasn't as universally celebrated as it is now. Today, scrolling through any social media app feels like browsing through a call sheet for female extras in a rap video. Butts have come out on top.

    With the increased attention placed on the rear, women who feel insecure about their rumps have turned to surgery to compensate for their genetics. The surgery of choice is the infamous Brazilian Butt Lift. In addition to sounding like a pro wrestling maneuver, the procedure is hazardous and costs several women their lives. In the video linked above, Vice explains why the surgery is so dangerous.

  • Today may or may not be George Jetson's birthday George Jetson

    Meet George Jetson. No, I'm not signing the theme song. I mean, get ready to meet him, because he is supposed to be born today. Or, ya know, maybe not. Welcome to one of the weirdest debates on the internet. The whole conversation began when studious fans of The Jetsons noticed that the show was supposed to take place a hundred years from its original airdate. Since the show came out in 1962, fans have come to believe that The Jetsons takes place in 2062. So why is 2022 significant? In an episode of the original series, George confirms that he's 40 years old. 

    With the aforementioned information in mind, Jetsons fans began to pore over every episode hoping to find a specific date for George's birthday. Why spend time on such an inane pursuit, you ask? There are few things more exciting to pedantic fans like myself than watching a piece of media that takes place in the future slowly become anachronistic. It ain't much, but it's honest work. 

    Let's dispense with the date, first: As far as we can tell, there is no canonical evidence that George Jetson's birthday is July 31. Or any date; we can't find anything in the actual show that ever commits to a birthday for this poor awful man. No episodes seem to take place during it, it never seems to have been referenced as a plot point in any of the show's three seasons (either the first, from 1962, or the two revival seasons from the '80s), and the only source that's ever cited for it is an easily edited Fandom wiki. (Meanwhile, Wikipedia has locked down edits on George's page in order to combat the hordes of George Jetson birthday truthers currently storming its gates.) So there's that part de-bunked/definitively de-funned. The 2022 part, meanwhile, does have at least a little, squint-and-it-tracks, smidge of canonicity to it. As our own colleagues at Gizmodo pointed out a few years back—while tackling the equally important question of whether George and Jane's seven-year age gap revealed uncomfortable truths about their relationship—there's text that suggests that George Jetson is, in fact, 40.  

  • The RZA goes troubleshooting in his new single Bobby Digital

    Even though he's one of the most prolific and visionary artists in the field of Hip hop, the RZA is known to draw inspiration from other mediums rabidly. The Wu-Tang Clan itself, which was his brainchild, is the perfect testament to how potently mediums outside of music influence the RZA. When the RZA went to produce solo albums outside of the Wu-Tang Clan, he did it under yet another pseudonym in Bobby Digital. Through Digital, the RZA created a veritable Hip hop superhero with lore and a backstory that rivals official comic characters. The RZA even got comics legend, Bill Sienkiewicz, to illustrate the cover for Bobby Digital's first album. 

    The RZA has decided to embark on another multimedia approach for his most recent release in RZA: Presents Bobby Digital and the Pit of Snakes. The album acts as the score for RZA's upcoming graphic novel of the same name. In the video linked above for Troubleshooting, you can check out some of the enticing visuals for the graphic novel. 

  • The trailer for Locke & Key season three is here Locke & Key

    Horror comics are the second pillar of the American industry, next to superheroes. When the content regulation mandated by the Comics code swept the industry in the 50s, several of the most popular genres got wiped out. Even though horror books couldn't focus on graphic depictions of violence, the genre still found a way to thrive in the 70s with comics like Tomb of Dracula and House of Mystery. Now that the Comics Code is a thing of the past, horror comics returned with a vengeance. In its heyday, The Walking Dead was once the biggest book in comics, while creative titles like Locke & Key earned immense critical success. 

    When AMC struck gold with The Walking Dead, comic fans knew that it would only be a matter of time until Hollywood began hoovering up other horror comics to adapt. Locke & Key eventually found a home on Netflix and a cult fanbase to boot. In the video linked above, you can check out the trailer for the third and final season of the comic adaptation. 

  • Drago is getting a spin-off in the style of Creed Drago

    There's an undeniable grit to the Rocky franchise that hasn't diminished with age. Typically, films from the 70s seem reserved compared to their modern equivalents. Despite laying the groundwork for the gangster genre, The Godfather seems glacially paced and tame when placed against contemporary crime films. The Rocky franchise doesn't have that problem. Every combat sports film and their mother still struggle to match the intensity of any given Rocky movie. As a result, Hollywood just said, "hey, what if we kept making Rocky movies even though Stallone is pushing 80?" 

    Ryan Coogler's Creed revived the ailing Rocky franchise and even garnered a sequel. In the sequel, Apollo Creed's son was given a chance to avenge his father's death by beating the son of Ivan Drago. Although Creed 2 didn't have the same critical reception as the first film, MGM believes there's enough narrative meat on the bones for a Drago-based spin-off. 

    The character first made his debut in Creed II as the main opponent against Michael B. Jordan's Adonis Creed, with Rocky veteran Dolph Lundgren reprising his role as the Soviet captain who trains his son Viktor. The story leads on from Ivan Drago's rivalry with Balboa after he killed Adonis' father Apollo Creed during a boxing match. Munteanu will obviously return for Drago as well as Creed III, but there's no news yet on either Lundgren or Stallone's involvement with the title. Robert Lawton has been tapped to write the screenplay following his work on Becoming Rocky, a spec script about the making of the very first Rocky movie.

  • Even Oppenheimer's teaser is tense Oppenheimer Image

    Christopher Nolan has an uncanny ability to generate hype for his films without uttering a word. As one of the most gifted filmmakers in the industry, Nolan has built a cult fandom of cinephiles that regard each entry into his filmography as a historical event. While that perspective may be something of a dramatic response to the catalog of a talented director, one has to marvel at how Nolan found a way to create thought-provoking blockbusters. Being able to combine crowd-pleasing content with cerebral narratives is quite a feat. 

    With his new film, Oppenheimer, the typical hype that precedes a Nolan release has reached critical mass. Oppenheimer boasts an all-star, but in addition to the alluring ensemble of actors, the film carries a palpable mystique. How exactly is Nolan going to approach this film? Is it a traditional bio-pic, or is it something grander? Since we have very few clues, the looping live teaser from Universal pictures will have to suffice until the actual trailer drops.

    In the video linked above, you can check out Oppenheimer's teaser, which features a countdown timer for the film's release. 

  • Florida man uses stolen truck while warning Space Force about a war between aliens and Chinese dragons Florida Man

    At this point, the supernatural force known as Florida Man should be classified in the same bracket as the Loch Ness Monster and The Chupacabra. Although countless mortal men have been associated with the deeds of Florida Man, the truth behind these repeated occurrences of rampant lawlessness in the Sunshine state is infinitely more supernatural than the media would have you believe. 

    Florida Man is an ethereal being that can only possess human males somewhere between their fifth shot of vodka and their third violent offense. As an incorporeal entity, Florida Man is privy to a host of arcane knowledge that exists far beyond the scope of human comprehension. Ergo, when Florida Man talks, we should listen. 

    When Corey Johnson found himself housing Florida Man's celestial energy, he valiantly retained his sanity long enough to share what Florida Man knew. Under Florida Man's control, Johnson stole a Ford F-150 and drove to the Space Force base in Brevard County to warn them of an impending war. Johnson tried to warn us of a war between aliens and Chinese Dragons. Sadly, like Galileo, Johnson was imprisoned for his radical observations – and, ya know, the whole grand theft auto thing too.

    According to his arrest affidavit, Johnson said he was ordered by President Biden in his head to steal the truck and drive it to the Space Force base to "warn the government' about "U.S. aliens fighting with Chinese dragons." The Florida man, who has been booked into Brevard County Jail, was charged with grand theft of a motor vehicle. His bond was reportedly set at $3,000.

  • Hannibal Buress explains why he left the Eric Andre show

    Some shows generate more memes than others. The Simpsons' memes have become so omnipresent that they've gone full circle and appeared in the series. Even though any show can become a meme factory- I'm looking at you, The Office– few networks consistently produce as many memes as Adult Swim. Within Adult Swim's roster of "meme-able" shows, The Eric Andre Show resides at the top of the list. 

    The Eric Andre Show was a surreal parody of the late-night talk show genre that starred the eponymous Eric Andre and the hilarious Hannibal Buress. While both men have enjoyed tremendous success in the field of entertainment, Hannibal Buress is unquestionably the bigger star of the two. With roles in Marvel's Spider-Man franchise and several other blockbusters, Buress is rapidly approaching the A-list tier amongst comedians. 

    In the video linked above, Buress sits down with Steve-O to explain why he left The Eric Andre Show

  • Neil Gaiman breaks down the trailer for Sandman Sandman

    Sandman's debut on Netflix is rapidly approaching, and last weekend, during San Diego Comic-Con, Netflix unveiled more footage of the highly anticipated series. Even though fans have been clamoring for a Sandman adaptation since the days of the comic series, it took decades for a television show to come to fruition. One of the reasons the process of adaptation took so long was due to Neil Gaiman's involvement in the series. As the visionary creator of the Sandman comic, Gaiman was incredibly discerning about how the show would be executed and by who. As a result, you can bet that the upcoming Netflix adaptation has more than cleared Gaiman's high bar of quality. 

    In the video linked above, Vanity Fair's YouTube channel has Gaiman sit down and analyze the trailer for Netflix's Sandman. If you ever needed proof that the new Sandman series has Neil Gaiman's stamp of approval, the video will provide the solace you seek. 

  • Man abandons wife after she births their fifth set of twins

    Humans with peculiar and borderline superhuman abilities will always stoke the imagination of the masses. Let's be honest; humans are woefully lacking in cool, natural abilities compared to other animals. Barring our massive and deadly efficient brains, most of our physiology is astonishingly weak. We can't fly; we're not amphibious, and we can't regenerate limbs. As a result, when a human exhibits bizarre biological gifts, we, as a species, usually celebrate them. In the case of Nalongo Gloria, a mother of ten from Uganda, her unusual ability consistently conceive twins caused her husband to withdraw his support from their marriage. 

    Gloria became a global news story after her husband ended their marriage because the couple welcomed their fifth set of twins. In addition to the departure of her husband, several of Gloria's older children have also abandoned the family. As one could imagine, Gloria has suffered tremendous financial strain as a single mother of ten children. Despite her situation, Gloria is grateful for all of her children and could never imagine abandoning them. 

    Devastated Nalongo said her partner had previously threatened to walk out on her if she failed to produce just the one child after allegedly setting out a list of terms and conditions. "The man told me he can't take care of me with the dogs," she told NTV Mwasuze Mutya. The dad reportedly disappeared one night following their births as Nalongo was left to single-handedly raise the children. She said many of the older siblings have already flown the nest with their whereabouts unknown. And amid further tragedy, the mum said she could even be forced to find a new home as the family struggle financially.

  • An exclusive interview with Peppa Pig's "Daddy Pig" Richard Ridings

    Wearing multiple hats is a necessity in parenthood. Between serving as a chef, chauffeur, and bank teller, one also has to be a therapist and a handyman. As if occupying various roles wasn't stressful enough, parents eventually have to find the time to be good at them all. In the hit children's show Peppa Pig, the running gag of Daddy Pig claiming to be proficient at everything while humorously botching the task moments later is easily one of the show's most relatable bits for adult viewers. And while the character of Daddy Pig only claims to be a jack of all trades, Richard Ridings, the actor behind the role, is as well-rounded as his animated alter ego purports to be. 

    Ridings' diverse array of interests and talents almost led him down a vastly different career path. "I'd always been more into sports and music," says Ridings. "I was a shot put and rugby player." By the time Ridings discovered acting in his late teens, he had already charted a successful route into the adult world. "Originally, I was going to read law," he says. However, while spending time in Yorkshire, Ridings stumbled into the world of theater. 

    Although acting was new to Ridings at the time, his long-standing love of music had engendered a penchant for performance in his heart. "I have my own studio, and I write and record music," says Ridings, "I may even get around to releasing it someday." If Ridings ever decides to release his music, he'd have some stiff competition from his daughter Freya, who has become a wildly popular singer/songwriter. 

    When the prospect of working on Peppa Pig arose in 2004, Ridings jumped at the opportunity to create content for his children. "My daughter was eight at the time," says Ridings, "and we had a boy that was two." As a father of a severely dyslexic daughter, Ridings wanted to give his children the specialized attention they required. "We home educated for a while," he says, "and that put the kibosh on theater." 

    Providing his voice for animation allowed Ridings the level of flexibility he needed for homeschooling while simultaneously fortifying his career. "I recorded the whole first series in one day," says Ridings, "we started at eight in the morning and finished around five in the evening." 

     In about the length of time it took Ridings to record his performance, Peppa Pig became a global hit. Quentin Tarantino recently called Peppa Pig "the greatest British import of the decade." Ridings never doubted the project but claims he never saw the show's massive success coming. "The signs of the popularity took everyone by surprise," he says. Even though Peppa Pig's impact initially shocked Ridings, he's since had time to dissect why the show became an international sensation. "It's all about telling stories and finding something that connects with people," says Ridings.

    In retrospect, Ridings' role in Peppa Pig seems like destiny, as some of his early acting gigs focused on a similar demographic. "I started doing children's theatre," says Ridings, "and then went back to acting school." 

    An audible glee permeates Ridings' voice when discussing his role as Daddy Pig. "It's a wonderful story to be a part of," says Ridings, "you see it in the younger generation." Beyond using his performance as Daddy Pig as a way to "keep the magic alive," Peppa Pig's ability to educate and entertain children undoubtedly holds a special place in Ridings' heart. 

    Although Daddy Pig may be his most prominent role in voice acting, Ridings is no stranger to the field, with an extensive catalog of video games to his credit. Ridings has even ventured into the world of motion capture while playing "Buck" in 2011's Rise of the Planet of the Apes. When it comes to mediums of performance, Ridings doesn't have a preference. "I love the variety," says Ridings, "I love doing radio as well." 

    Daddy Pig may fall on his face while undertaking a task, but Ridings' prolific career has done the inverse by taking flight. So, while pigs may not fly, the voice behind Daddy Pig is riding high. 

  • Russia solidifies plans to leave the international space station after 2024 Space Station

    What do the kids say? "It ain't a good look." Well, Russia in 2022 is the definition of "not a good look." Vladimir Putin's horrific invasion of Ukraine has swiftly turned him into arguably the most despised world leader. Considering that Kim Jong Un still exists, that's quite a feat. The response to Russia's invasion has caused several countries to withdraw their economic support from the country for good. When McDonald's- who has no problem slowly murdering customers with their shoddy food- announces they're leaving your country, you know you're definitely in "ain't a good look" territory. 

    However, it seems like Russia isn't going to let everyone walk out on them. Russia is planning to do some walking themselves. Russia previously announced that they would withdraw support from the International Space Station in April, but now the nation has given participating countries a year. Russia plans to leave the international space station after 2024. Although there hasn't been an official withdrawal put in writing, it doesn't seem like Russia has any intent on staying in the ISS. 

    The country's announcement today (July 26) that it plans to pull out of the International Space Station (ISS) consortium after 2024 sounds definitive. But the space community remains divided about how seriously to take that stated threat. 

    "What they mean is that the Russian decision to withdraw from participation in the station by 2024 is becoming firmer," John Logsdon, a space historian and policy analyst at George Washington University, told Space.com.

    He said the announcement was a statement of intent by Russia to withdraw from the ISS partnership and to put its personnel and financial resources into developing an independent space station, which might be an early-stage "paper station" at this point.

    Logsdon said the remaining space station consortium partners have probably been developing contingency plans for years, based on past comments by Russian space agency leadership. "I mean, that would be derelict duty if they haven't done anything," he said.

    NASA Administrator Bill Nelson signaled, however, that the agency has not yet received a formal withdrawal notice from Roscosmos, Russia's federal space agency.

    "NASA is committed to the safe operation of the International Space Station through 2030, and is coordinating with our partners," Nelson said in an emailed statement today. "NASA has not been made aware of decisions from any of the partners, though we are continuing to build future capabilities to assure our major presence in low-Earth orbit."

    "We haven't received any official word from the partner as to the news today," Robyn Gatens, ISS director at NASA headquarters, said at the livestreamed ISS Research and Development Conference in Washington, D.C. this morning, according to SpaceNews(opens in new tab). 

    She speculated that perhaps Russia was planning for a future space station after the ISS, along similar lines to NASA's early-stage commercial space station efforts. "I think the Russians, just like us, are thinking ahead to what's next for them," Gatens said.