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The 25 most iconic sci-fi spaceships, as chosen by a Hollywood VFX designer

5. Pan Am Space Clipper

The movie: 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)

Why it's a damn fine vessel: The Pan Am Space Clipper was presented as a realistic solution to orbital travel. So much so, that in 1968 the airline started their “Moon flight reservations program” and actually put tickets on-sale for future journeys to orbit and beyond. By 1985 they were holding 90,002 reservations.

4. Discovery

The movie: 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)

Why it's a damn fine vessel: The Discovery spacecraft design featured nuclear engines, which was the main reason for the huge central spine separating the crew from the fuel and thrusters. This might seen crazy today, but designs of the cold-war and thinking of the 1960s used nuclear engines as a baseline standard for many real-world vehicles.

3. Eagle Transporter

The show: Space: 1999 (1975)

Why it's a damn fine vessel: This ship was originally the Interceptor from the TV show “UFO”. Designed Mike Trim took heavy inspiration from the Apollo era space vehicles and attempted to extrapolate out to where they might end up. The Eagle became the workhorse of the show “Space 1999” and appeared in many variants that are still hugely popular in the model making community.

2. USS Sulaco

The movie: Aliens (1986)

Why it's a damn fine vessel: Designed by the legendary Syd Mead (who also designed Blade Runner), this military load carrier only appears in the movie for a couple of shots, but still managed to leave a huge impression on audiences. Consequently, the studio model was only finished down one side to save time and money.

1. The Millennium Falcon

The movie: Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith (2005), Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back (1980), Star Wars: A New Hope (1977), Star Wars: Return of the Jedi (1983), Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015), Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017)

Why it's a damn fine vessel: The most iconic space ship ever designed, this vehicle was actually a studio kitbash that was built in just four weeks. Numerous versions of this ship were built for the original trilogy, the smallest being the size of a quarter and used in the scene in Empire Strikes Back where the Falcon lands on the Imperial Star Destroyer. The UCS Lego set of the Millennium Falcon is the largest ever sold, and contains 7.541 individual pieces.