Ashton Kutcher Joins Virgin Galactic as 500th Astronaut, Richard Branson Announces
Ashton Kutcher is headed to space. At some point, anyway.
The Two and a Half Men star has become the 500th "astronaut" to reserve space on a Virgin Galactic spacecraft, the company's founder, Sir Richard Branson, wrote on its website Monday.
"I gave Ashton a quick call to congratulate and welcome him," Branson wrote. "He is as thrilled as we are at the prospect of being among the first to cross the final frontier (and back!) with us and to experience the magic of space for himself."
Kutcher has long been on the forefront of emerging technologies, with plentiful investments in internet startups. His work in the sector has caused him some trouble; earlier this season, he used laptop stickers to subtly promote the companies -- such as foursquare -- in which he invested, drawing criticism and scrutiny. Ultimately, CBS did not take action against him.
Virgin Galactic has been running test flights of its SpaceShipTwo, which will fly 100 km above the earth's surface, with a total flight time of just over six hours. Down payment for a seat on the shuttle is $20,000, while it will cost $200,000 in total to ride once the flights begin.