Two and a Half Men star Ashton Kutcher recently signed up to the be the 500th passenger on Sir Richard Branson's Virgin Galactic shuttle service. Branson says that Kutcher is "thrilled" at the chance to go into space, and that his shuttle is in its final stages of test flights.
"I gave Ashton a quick call to congratulate and welcome him. 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," Branson added.
Branson goes on to verify the safety of his commercial space flight service - "As you can see .. our spaceships are not only very beautiful but are built and flying in the final stages of our exhaustive test flight program - We are guided by safety and so will ensure that everything is just as safe as it can possibly be before we start commercial services -- particularly as I will be on the first commercial flight with my kids!"
Branson welcomed Kutcher via Twitter, and Kutcher opted not to respond, but re-tweeted to his almost 10 million followers:
Branson opened "Spaceport America," the world's first of its kind, in the New Mexico desert last October. The spaceport will likely house two WhiteKnightTwos, the spacecraft launch vehicles, and five SpaceShipTwos, the orbital vehicles.
Branson's other pursuits involve deep sea exploration, and the entrepreneur has been in collaboration with director James Cameron regarding a mission to the bottom of the Mariana Trench.
Kutcher had replaced troubled actor Charlie Sheen on the popular sitcom "Two and a Half Men," and divorced from actress Demi Moore.