Soviet space officials have offered entertainer John Denver a chance to fly in space on a seven-day visit to their Mir space station in December 1989, it was reported Saturday.
Soviet insistence on a $10 million fee is the only thing that stands between him and that trip, Denver told the Houston Chronicle. But he said the fee may be waived through the intercession of politically powerful friends of his in the Soviet Union."They told me I would have to make up my mind by Nov. 1, yea or nay, on whether I would pay them $10 million for my training and housing and other needs for the trip into space," Denver said in an interview from his Aspen, Colo., home.
"They (Soviets) told me I could start training in April or May (1989) and that they had a spot for me to fly to the Mir and spend seven days there in December." The singer estimated he has a "60-40 chance" of having the $10 million fee waived, noting that he has met Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev and that his space venture has the approval of Roald Sagdeev, a close friend of Gorbachev's and the Soviets' leading space planetary scientist.
Denver said he would like to conduct a television show from Mir "that I would host and would be broadcast all over the world. I want to talk to children all over the world." Denver said his plan was motivated by the worldwide feelings that occurred when man first saw pictures of the Earth from astronauts orbiting the moon.