Groundbreaking film for IMAX™, Giant Screen and Fulldome Theaters gets new title
On July 1st, 2004, the Cassini-Huygens spacecraft arrived at Saturn and sent the first stunning photographs back to Earth. A few days later, disappointed in the lack of media exposure to this historic event, North Carolina filmmaker Stephen van Vuuren wrote a one scene dialogue about space exploration and Cassini’s images entitled “Outside In”.
Over the next 8 years, the labor of love project grew from the one dialog scene to a 5 minute experimental short to a HiDef 12 minute planetarium film. During a chance meeting with James Hyder, the Editor & Publisher of LF Examiner, he strongly encouraged van Vuuren to create the film for the giant screen/IMAX™ format. Despite the seeming technical impossibility at the time, van Vuuren re-envisioned the film and spent several years perfecting the techniques to animate photographs to full motion at giant screen resolutions.
The original title, however, no longer fits the film as it lacks the dialog that originally explained it. Taking a cue from the iconic photograph of Saturn backlit that is featured in the climax of the film – the new title is “In Saturn’s Rings“. In that iconic photograph, a small blue dot is observed “in Saturn’s rings”. That dot is, of course, our home, Earth. On the new official site for the film, www.insaturnsrings.com, that photograph is captioned with “you are here” to underline the aptness of the new title.
“In Saturn’s Rings” is the result of years of painstaking, advanced photographic animation techniques that create full motion animation at IMAX™ resolution using real images from the Cassini-Huygens mission all without the use of 3D models or 3D CGI. By using real photographs, the film aims to spark and inspire interest in space exploration to new audiences drawn to see real photographs from space.
The online release of the first minute of footage went viral and currently has over 4.3 million hits in more than 250 countries. Major media outlets covering the clip include Wired, Gizmodo, Discovery Channel Canada, Slashdot, News.Com (AU), and MSNBC.com. The Daily Mail (UK) commented on the footage, comparing its artfulness to Stanley Kubrick’s “2001: A Space Odyssey.” Around the world, viewers have been awe-struck by these beautiful moving images of Saturn and space.
The worldwide attention caught NASA’s eye and the video clip became NASA’s “Astronomy Picture of the Day” (APOD) on March 15th, a tremendous honor for an art film by a non-scientist.
About In Saturn’s Rings: “In Saturn’s Rings” is a feature-length, giant screen/IMAX™ film destined for IMAX™, fulldome, giant screen theaters around the world. It artistically brings stunning real photographs of space exploration to life using ground-breaking techniques in creating full motion picture footage from still images. Accompanied by powerful music, immersive sound design and key quotes from Carl Sagan, Stephen Hawking, T.S. Eliot and more, “In Saturn’s Rings” takes audiences on a 14 billion light journey of the mind, heart and spirit from the big bang to the near future via the Cassini-Huygens Mission at Saturn. For more information, visit www.insaturnsrings.com or find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/outsideinthemovie or Twitter @outsideinmovie
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