Washington (AFP) – Plot twist: American comedian and actor Pete Davidson isn’t going to space next week after all.
The 28-year-old star of Saturday Night Live, who has been in the news recently because of his relationship with Kim Kardashian, is “no longer able to join the NS-20 crew on this mission,” Blue Origin said in an announcement late Thursday.
The space company owned by Amazon tycoon Jeff Bezos did not elaborate on reasons for Davidson’s withdrawal from the trip, which had been planned for March 23 — an 11-minute jaunt aboard a New Shepard suborbital rocket from the West Texas desert to just beyond the atmosphere, and back again.
The mission itself has now been pushed back six days to March 29, and Blue Origin said it would announce a new sixth member of the crew soon.
The other five are paying customers — mainly high-net-worth business people — and if Blue Origin’s fourth crewed flight follows the pattern of its previous launches, Davidson’s replacement will also be a celebrity guest, flying for free.
Davidson’s colorful love life has long been tabloid fodder, but his relationship with reality-star-turned-entrepreneur Kardashian and subsequent feud with her ex-husband, the rapper Kanye West, has garnered even greater attention.
West, legally known as Ye, has made no secret of his anger towards Davidson, burying him alive and holding his severed head in a claymation music video. Such behavior, along with extravagant attempts to win Kardashian back, has been termed abusive by critics.