'The Right Stuff' will premiere on Disney+ on Oct. 9

The poster for "The Right Stuff" on Disney+.
The poster for "The Right Stuff," which premieres Oct. 9 on Disney+. (Image credit: Disney/NatGeo)

The Disney+ series The Right Stuff will premiere on the streaming service on Oct. 9, Disney announced today. The new series (which also is an award-winning film) is based on the bestselling book by Tom Wolfe that looks at the early days of the space race and the story of how America found its first astronauts, dubbed the Mercury 7.

We'll let Disney itself explain The Right Stuff itself:

At the height of the Cold War in 1959, America fears it is a nation in decline as the Soviet Union dominates the space race. But, the U.S. government has a solution – put a man in space. Newly-formed NASA is given the monumental task, and a group of the nation’s best engineers estimate they’ll need decades to accomplish the feat…but they only have two years.

NASA engineers, including rocket scientist Bob Gilruth (Patrick Fischler) and the passionate Chris Kraft (Eric Ladin), work against the clock under mounting pressure from Washington. Together, they hand select seven astronauts from a pool of military test pilots. These are ordinary men, plucked from obscurity, and within days of being presented to the world, they are forged into heroes before they achieve a single heroic act.  

The two men at the center of it all are Major John Glenn (Patrick J. Adams), a revered Marine test pilot and committed family man, and Lieutenant Commander Alan Shepard (Jake McDorman), one of the best test pilots in Navy history. Other members of the Mercury 7 include Captain Gordo Cooper (Colin O’Donoghue), the youngest of the seven selected to everyone’s surprise; Wally Schirra (Aaron Staton), a competitive pilot with a gift for pulling pranks; Scott Carpenter (James Lafferty), dubbed “The Poet” by the other astronauts; Deke Slayton, (Micah Stock), a taciturn but incredibly intelligent pilot and engineer; and Gus Grissom, (Michael Trotter), a decorated military veteran who eventually becomes the second man in space.

The series also will take a look at the astronauts' families, including Annie Glenn (Nora Zehetner), who was thrust into the public spotlight while contending with a speech impediment, Louise Shepard (Shannon Lucio), who had to content with her husband's transgressions, and Trudy Cooper (Eloise Mumford), whose own ambitions were put aside in order to present the image of a model family.

Disney+ is available on every major streaming platform, including Roku, Apple TV, Android TV, iOS and Android, and on the web. It runs $6.99 a month or $69.99 a year. And if you're really serious about it, check out the epic Disney+/Hulu/ESPN+ bundle (opens in new tab) that gets you those three streaming services for just $12.99 a month.

Phil Nickinson

Phil spent his 20s in the newsroom of the Pensacola (Fla.) News Journal, his 30s on the road for AndroidCentral.com and Mobile Nations and is the Dad part of Modern Dad.