** FILE ** A Feb. 25, 2007 file photo shows mission specialists at the ESA European Space Operation Center (ESOC) in Darmstadt, southwestern Germany, operating the Rosetta probe during it's fly-by of planet Mars. European Space Agency ESA scientists are preparing for the first fly-by of an asteroid by their deep-space explorer, Rosetta, on a mission to solve the mystery of the birth of the solar system. Rosetta is set to rendezvous with the Steins asteroid, also known as Asteroid 2867, just before 1900 GMT on Friday, Sept. 5, 2008 at a distance of just less than 500 miles (800 kilometers). (AP Photo/Daniel Roland, File)
NEW YORK (AP) -- Should this world ever cease to exist, Stephen Colbert will live on. The comedian's DNA will be digitized and sent to the International Space Station, Comedy Central was to announce Monday. In October, video game designer Richard Garriott will travel to the station and deposit Colbert's genes for an "Immortality Drive."
"I am thrilled to have my DNA shot into space, as this brings me one step closer to my lifelong dream of being the baby at the end of 2001," Colbert said in a statement, referring to the 1968 landmark science fiction film "2001: A Space Odyssey."
Garriott, one of few private citizens to travel into space, is collecting material for a time capsule of human DNA, a history of humanity's greatest achievements and personal messages.
The host of "The Colbert Report" will essentially be preserved so that aliens can clone him.
"In the unlikely event that Earth and humanity are destroyed, mankind can be resurrected with Stephen Colbert's DNA," Garriott said in a statement. "Is there a better person for us to turn to for this high-level responsibility?"