Why it matters: Original programming is the main factor fueling the growth of on-demand streaming platforms. If Hulu wants to compete with major players like Netflix and Amazon, it needs to hit a few more balls out of the park. Based on early impressions, it 'll do just that with The First.

Hulu has published a debut trailer for its upcoming original drama about the first manned mission to Mars.

The First, from House of Cards creator Beau Willimon, stars Sean Penn as astronaut Tom Hagerty and Natascha McElhone, who plays Laz Ingram. The series will focus not only on the astronauts, but also their families and loved ones, as well as the ground crew back on Earth.

Willimon last year said it’s a story about the human spirit, about our indomitable need to reach for unknown horizons, about people working toward the greatest pioneering achievement in human history and about the cost of that vision – the danger and sacrifice – emotional, psychological and physical – required to achieve it. “How ordinary, imperfect people band together and overcome a myriad of obstacles to grasp the extraordinary,” he added.

The First is set to debut on September 14. It’s unclear if episodes will be released in a weekly fashion or all at once a la Netflix although if I had to guess, it’d be the former. Either way, it looks to be one of the more interesting originals from Hulu and one that I can’t wait to check out.