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Post by Chicago Astronomer Joe on Jan 13, 2006 10:44:25 GMT -6
A new IMAX film is to be released on the 27th of January 2006 called "Roving Mars".
The description follows:
The mysterious Red Planet, Mars, has inspired countless science fiction dreams and nightmares. Now, for the first time, experience the reality of the Mars surface as seen through the eyes of two intrepid, death-defying explorers -- Spirit and Opportunity, the Mars Rovers -- in the spectacular new giant screen adventure "Roving Mars," exclusively in IMAX theatres. The phenomenal size and clarity of the IMAX screen draws the viewer into a spectacular landscape that is at once awe-inspiring and amazing. And the suspenseful drama of the Rovers' dogged quest over the rugged terrain may even answer that persistently haunting question - Is there life on Mars? Produced by Academy Award-nominated filmmaker Frank Marshall ("Raiders of the Lost Ark," "Who Framed Roger Rabbit," "The Sixth Sense," "Seabiscuit") and produced and directed by George Butler ("The Endurance: Shackleton's Legendary Antarctic Expedition," "Pumping Iron"), with executive producer Scott Swofford ("Shackleton's Antarctic Adventure"), this film takes moviegoers on a fantastic journey unlike any that has ever been seen on the giant screen before. "Roving Mars" was written by George Butler and Robert Andrus, with narration written by George Butler. Multiple Oscar-nominated composer Philip Glass ("The Hours," "Kundun") adds to the excitement with his brilliant score.
Looks like a good one to catch, and I will certainly view it...
Chicago Astronomer Joe Founder, Administrator and Chief Astronomer
Telescope/Observatory Docent Facilitator Adler Planetarium & Astronomy Museum
Astronomy Instructor Instituto Del Progresso/IHSCA
Astronomy Program Instructor British International School of Chicago /Lincoln Park Campus
Resident Astronomer Chicago Park District Nature Oasis/Night Out in the Parks/ 606 Trail
Post by Chicago Astronomer Joe on Jan 25, 2006 14:59:30 GMT -6
Latest IMAX Movie Captures the Adventure of Exploration
Probably the most remarkable success in America’s space program (outside of being able to put humans on the Moon in 1969 after just eight years), has to be the story of two robotic rovers, Spirit and Opportunity, trucking around on Mars for more than two years.
No one appears more surprised at their longevity than the teams of scientists and engineers who built and still operate these remarkable machines, except possibly the film crew that set out to chronicle their adventures for Walt Disney and IMAX.
"Roving Mars" takes us all on an unforgettable journey to the Red Planet, piggybacking on the wildest ride in the solar system. The Delta II booster ignites at Cape Canaveral, hurtling us on our way. Stages separate, motors fire, spacecraft spin and de-spin, Earth and Moon recede into the black. Then Mars appears up ahead, the next second we hit atmosphere and hundreds of events follow in lockstep with the parachute unfurling, heat shield dropping away, air bags deploying, retro-rockets firing, then dropping and rolling on the rusty surface, amazingly intact to start our mission of discovery.
To capture Mars in IMAX, images relayed by the rovers were digitally mapped onto 3D terrain models. Even the landing sequence, which had the vehicle shrouded in its airbags tumbling about, was modeled as realistically as possible. As Steve explained, "The bouncing and spinning, that wasn’t made up. That’s real data from accelerometers and gyros inside the vehicle while it was landing. So those are the actual bounces we experienced. It was all there. It was really accurate."
In "Roving Mars," we travel alongside the robotic explorers, experiencing the thrill of discovering a whole new planet, right along with the scientists and engineers on Earth. As George Butler says, "Clearly a mission like the MER [Mars Exploration Rover], is the type of thing that America seems to do best, at a time when America is struggling to do anything well. This is really a great moment. I also hope the film will rekindle this country’s interest in its own space program."