Iridium satellite devices provide critical communications for global maritime, land mobile, and aviation users. While the network supports real-world heroes working around the world, it also plays a vital role for many fictional heroes across TV and movies.
Explore some of the books, episodes, and films that featured Iridium products.
24 (2001-2010, 2014)
Iridium products and partner accessories appear in several episodes of the Fox series 24, featuring the fictional Counter Terrorist Unit (CTU) agent Jack Bauer (portrayed by Kiefer Sutherland).
FedEx “Castaway” Ad (2003)
A 2003 Fedex commercial parodied the close of the film Castaway when Chuck Noland returns the unopened packages from the crashed cargo plane. When he asks the woman what was in the package he’s told “just a satellite phone, a GPS tracker, a fishing rod, water purifier, and some seeds.”
Showtime series Homeland centers on CIA agent Carrie Mathison working to combat terrorism at home and abroad. Iridium products are featured in several of Mathison’s clandestine adventures in countries around the world.
Finding Bigfoot (2011-2018)
Matt Moneymaker and other members of the Bigfoot Field Researchers Organization (BFRO) search for North America’s greatest urban legend on this Animal Planet show. As they venture through the remote wilderness of the U.S. and Canada, they use Iridium devices to stay in contact while on the hunt.
Wicked Tuna (2012-Present)
For the fishermen in National Geographic's Wicked Tuna, Iridium devices keep them connected while out at sea. The show features both an Iridium Extreme and Iridium IoT devices for them to communicate with each other and to those back on land.
The Handmaid’s Tale (2017-Present)
In Hulu’s the Handmaid’s Tale, Serena Joy — wife of prominent Gilead politician Fred Waterford — is given an Iridium 9555 as a means of contacting the American government-in-exile in Canada. Over the course of Season 3, the phone is featured several times as various residents of Gilead consider defecting north.
The Impossible Row (2019)
In the Discovery Channel’s Impossible Row, Colin O'Brady and his crew have achieved the impossible with the first human powered row across the Drake Passage from the tip of South America to Antarctica. O’Brady and crew use Iridium devices to stay connected as they traverse the southern reaches of the Pacific Ocean.
Money Heist (2019)
Netflix’s Money Heist features a cast of intriguing characters as they plan and execute a series of high stakes heists, stealing from the Royal Mint of Spain and the Bank of Spain. An Iridium Extreme® plays a key plot point in the relationship between two characters as they try to evade capture.
68 Whiskey (2020-Present)
Paramount Network’s military comedy-drama 68 Whiskey features Iridium products used by a fictional team of Army medics deployed to Afghanistan.
Lone Survivor (2013)
In the climax of Lone Survivor, Lieutenant Michael P. "Murph" Murphy sacrifices himself to call for air support on an Iridium 9505A satellite phone, ultimately saving Marcus Luttrell, the eponymous Lone Survivor.
World War Z (2013)
In this zombie movie, Brad Pitt’s character, Gerry Lane, stays in touch with his wife via an Iridium 9555 satellite phone, one of the few modes of communication that survives the systemic breakdown.
American Sniper (2014)
In the film, Navy SEAL Sniper Chris Kyle stays in touch with his wife while deployed with the help of an Iridium 9505A satellite phone. The device is featured in multiple key scenes of the film as a connection between his life in the military and his life back home.
San Andreas (2014)
In the aftermath of a series of earthquakes caused by the San Andreas faultline, LA fire department rescue pilot (portrayed by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson) uses an Iridium phone while communicating with him family from his helicopter.
Jurassic World (2015)
An Iridium Extreme® is briefly seen in use by one of the officers in command of the troops helping Owen Grady (portrayed by Chris Pratt) the park’s latest dinosaur creation.
12 Strong (2018)
Based on a true story, this film follows a unit of Green Berets fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan alongside a coalition of Afghan fighters. Iridium products are featured as a way to safely and securely communicate between key military and diplomatic leaders.
Dora and the Lost City of Gold (2019)
Dora’s parents give her an Iridium Extreme to stay in touch with them while they are traveling, looking for Parapata, the lost city of gold.
Ice Trek: A Journey to the South Pole (2000)
In 1998, Eric Phillips embarked on a journey to the South Pole with fellow explorers Jon Muir and Peter Hillary. Iridium satellite phones were one part of the well-planned and well-publicized journey, used for regular updates on the adventure to media and listeners back home.
True Spirit (2010)
16-year-old Jessica Watson tells her story of being the youngest person to sail solo around the entire world. Armed with an Iridium satellite phone for emergencies and staying in contact with friends and family, Jessica completed her 210 day and 22,000 nautical mile journey in May 2010.
Creating Iridium (2016)
Durrell Hillis, former head of Motorola’s defense and space group, wrote this insider look at the development of the Iridium constellation and its growth from a small Motorola project to a full-fledged company.
Eccentric Orbits: The Iridium Story (2017)
Eccentric Orbits is the tale of the failure and rebirth of Iridium in the aftermath of the company’s infamous bankruptcy. Written by investigative journalist John Bloom, the book chronicles how Dan Colussy saved the constellation from deorbiting.
A Telephone for the World: Iridium, Motorola, and the Making of the Global Age (2018)
Written by Martin Collins, curator at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, A Telephone for the World, tells the story of Iridium through the lens of a rapidly globalizing world. The book outlines the company’s history and its international impact on technology, markets, and politics.
The Outlaw Ocean (2019)
Based on his previous reporting series in the New York Times, Ian Urbina’s The Outlaw Ocean documents first-hand accounts of offshore crimes ranging from illegal fishing and theft to slavery and murder. Over the course of his reporting, Urbina used an Iridium satellite phone to stay safe and in contact with his team.
Where will Iridium appear next? Check back to see what other stars will be spotted with Iridium!