Space Cadet: Is Toddrick Spencer Based on a Real Space Company Owner?

Image Credit: Eric Liebowitz//Prime Video

In Prime Video’s ‘Space Cadet,’ we follow Rex Simpson, whose dream of becoming an astronaut seemed to have slipped her grasp after her career took a turn for the worse due to personal struggles. Now, without a proper degree in STEM, she has submitted herself to her current life as a bartender. Meanwhile, other people have done some exceptional things with their lives. One of those people is her former classmate, Toddrick Spencer. Rex is impressed with him because not only has he managed to have a stellar academic background, but he is now running his own space company that fosters tourism. But how much reality is there in Toddrick’s character and his company?

Toddrick Spencer and His Space Company are Fictional

‘Space Cadet’ is an entirely fictional tale from the mind of writer-director Liz Garcia. She wanted to explore the scenario of being able to follow one’s dreams when it seemed there was no way they could achieve them. While Rex is the focus of the story, Garcia needed characters that would not only add to the variety of the story but also act as markers against which Rex would compare her own successes and failures. Toddrick Spencer happens to be one of them.

In a movie about space travel, especially in the current climate, it wouldn’t have made sense not to consider private space companies’ role in space travel, especially about space tourism. With companies like SpaceX, Virgin Galactic, and Blue Origin being major players in space tech, Garcia used them as references to set the tone for Toddrick’s company. In real life, NASA collaborates with private companies for its missions, so it made sense that Toddrick and his company should appear at a critical juncture to give more weight to the plot. However, when crafting Toddrick’s character, Garcia decided to write him out of her imagination rather than draw from real-life people like Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk.

Actor Sebastián Yatra Brings His Charisma to the Role

Even though Toddrick appears for barely 2-3 scenes in ‘Space Cadet,’ he is one of the unforgettable characters from the movie, simply because his presence is so noticeable in every scene he appears in. The credit for that goes to actor Sebastián Yatra, who brings that subtlety to his character, even though some of Toddrick’s actions might make him seem odd. In the movie, Toddrick becomes rich after starting a space company and tells Rex that he was inspired by her to follow a career in STEM. He even had her picture as his screensaver throughout his school and college years to keep himself motivated. Rex doesn’t quite know how to process this information but is happy to have reconnected with Toddrick, which eventually works in her favor.

In real life, Sebastián Yatra took a different route and became a pop star. Hailing from Colombia, the artist has quite a fan following, and after enjoying a successful music career, he has shifted to the movies. ‘Space Cadet’ is his second project after the Netflix series ‘Érase una vez, pero ya no.’ Interestingly, none of his co-stars knew about his career in music and were shocked to discover how popular of a star he was.

For Yatra, the taste of success in real life was replicated in his character’s career success in ‘Space Cadet. ‘ The actor brought his own humility into Toddrick’s character so that even after he has become a billionaire and a big-shot, he doesn’t forget his roots and doesn’t refrain from helping his friends when they need him the most.

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