SpaceX recently announced plans to send an unmanned spacecraft to Mars by 2018. The aerospace manufacturer and space transport services company ultimately wants to send humans to the distant Red Planet in the not-too-distant future.
When that happens, founder Elon Musk wants them to arrive in style which means, not just any old spacesuit will do. Rather than enlist the help of aerospace experts, Musk commissioned Hollywood costume designer Jose Fernandez to create an iconic spacesuit for SpaceX astronauts.
In an interview with Bleep, Fernandez said the company reached out and asked him to create a spacesuit. Unfamiliar with SpaceX, the designer originally thought it was a film. Once he realized what he'd got himself into and with just two weeks to present the suit, Fernandez conceded that he simply couldn't do it that quickly but may be able to design a helmet.
According to Fernandez, Musk had four other companies working on bids but he apparently "hated" everything except for the helmet. Six months later, the two had come up with a suit that Musk approved which is currently being reverse-engineered by SpaceX to make it functional for space travel.
Fernandez said the suit had to be practical but it also needed to look great. When astronauts put the suit on, they want them to look better than they did without it, kind of like a tuxedo.
The interview was conducted a few months back but slipped under the radar until Fernandez's involvement with the project was mentioned in a recent video from Tested.
Fernandez got started in the film industry in 1989 as a sculptor for the movie Gremlins. Since that time, he's worked on X-Men films, the Spiderman series and multiple Batman films. Interestingly enough, he's responsible for the Catwoman suit worn by Michelle Pfeiffer which he said was basically an S&M suit from West Hollywood that he added custom stitching to.
Unfortunately, we probably won't get a look at SpaceX's suit until sometime next year at the earliest although Reddit claims it'll look like this: