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The Academy to highlight NASA’s Apollo program

HollywoodNews.com: The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has announced that they will explore the physical realities of science fiction movies in the three-evening series “Out of This World: The Science of Space Movies” beginning on Thursday, August 5. “Out of This World” will continue on Friday, August 6, with a presentation of Fritz Lang’s 1929 silent classic “Woman in the Moon” and conclude on Saturday, August 7, with screenings of “Project Apollo” (1968) and “For All Mankind” (1989), documentaries that focus on NASA’s Apollo program.

All three evenings are being presented by the Academy’s Science and Technology Council. The following is information for each night:

“Out of This World: The Science of Space Movies”
Thursday, August 5, 7:30 p.m. at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater, Beverly Hills

Hosted by Adam Weiner, the program will examine the physics principles behind many science fiction movies and explore how the fictional world of Hollywood can often provide an effective springboard into investigating real science.

In an interactive presentation, Weiner will lead a physics-based analysis of famous scenes from such movies as “Planet of the Apes” (1968), “Superman” (1978), “Apollo 13” (1995), “Contact” (1997), “Event Horizon” (1997), “October Sky” (1999) and “Star Trek” (2009).

Joining Weiner onstage will be writer Ann Druyan (“Contact”), writer Philip Eisner (“Event Horizon”) and former NASA flight director Gerry Griffin, who served as a technical advisor on “Apollo 13” and “Contact.” The program also will feature the films’ technical teams who will explain how scenes were created, as well as discussion with experts on space travel.

Weiner is the author of Don’t Try This at Home! The Physics of Hollywood Movies. He currently teaches physics at The Bishop’s School, a private high school in La Jolla, California.

“Woman in the Moon” (1929)
Friday, August 6, 7 p.m. at the Linwood Dunn Theater, Hollywood

Considered to be one of the most influential science fiction films of its time, this Lang classic, based on Thea von Harbou’s novel “Frau im Mond,” tells the story of a group of scientists and adventurers who take a rocket trip to the moon. The film stars Klaus Pohl, Willy Fritsch, Fritz Rasp and Gerda Maurus. The film was directed and produced by Lang and written by von Harbou.

This evening also will be hosted by Weiner.

“Project Apollo” (1968) and “For All Mankind” (1989)
Saturday, August 7, 7 p.m. at The Silent Movie Theatre, Los Angeles

In collaboration with The Cinefamily, “Out of This World” continues with screenings of “Project Apollo” and “For All Mankind.”

Using fluid camera work and no narration, experimental filmmaker Ed Emshwiller’s “Project Apollo” was made for the United States Information Agency and gives a fascinating portrait of NASA’s Apollo project a full year before the actual moon landing.

“For All Mankind” is an Academy Award®-nominated documentary chronicling NASA’s Apollo missions from the 1960s and ‘70s. It features original mission footage, and interviews with the astronauts and excerpts from actual mission recordings. The documentary was directed by Al Reinert, and produced by Reinert and Betsy Broyles Breier.

Tickets for “Out of This World: The Science of Space Movies” on August 5 and 6 are $5 for the general public and $3 for Academy members and students with a valid ID. Tickets are available for purchase by mail, at the Academy box office (8949 Wilshire Boulevard, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.), or online at www.oscars.org. Doors open one hour prior to each event. All seating is unreserved.

The Samuel Goldwyn Theater is located at the 8949 Wilshire Boulevard in Beverly Hills.

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