SPACE ODDITY

Lance Bass' fee is overdue...

*N SYNC star LANCE BASS’ bid to become the world’s first pop star in space is in jeopardy because his fee has not been paid.

The star is due to blast off in a Spyuz rocket to the International Space Station on October 28 on a ticket costing $20million.

However, the fee, owed to the Russian space agency, was due yesterday (August 13), but no money was paid.

Bass is training at a cosmonaut school in Star City outside Moscow. He started on July 4, and is cramming six months pre-flight preparations into four months. He and the rest of his crew are due this month to travel to Houston for a week of intensive training with NASA.

LA based production company Destiny Productions are filming Bass’s training and flight for a television special called ‘Celebrity Mission: Lance Bass’. Producer David Krieff has been gathering sponsors to help cover the flight fee.

Bass says three sponsors have already come up with between $5m to $15m each. Though he would not name the sponsors, he said a “huge soft drink” manufacturer was involved and referred to a conglomerate “like Procter & Gamble”. He blamed the late payment on Russian bureaucracy, the BBC reports.

“In my mind it’s a lot of talk and posturing. That is their style and I can appreciate it. This is 100% going forward,” he said. “He’s doing beautifully, he’s kicking butt in every way. He’s totally dedicated and everybody loves him there,” Krieff added.