Apollo 11 Movie Poster

Trivia for Apollo 11

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  • The electronic music soundtrack was played entirely on instruments available in 1969.
  • In an interview in the March 8, 2019 New York Times, documentary filmmaker Todd Douglas Miller stated that his crew had their own mission rules regarding the footage used in the film: ""We did have kind of our own mission rules. We said, if it didn't happen on that day at that specific time, we're not using it." He did say that he did break this rule on several occasions, using shots from Apollo 8's propulsive push rather than Apollo 11's but that he would document where he used different clips from other launches.
  • The team that put together this documentary used the work that Ben Feist did when he increased the quality of 11,000 hours of digitized audio recordings of taken during the Apollo 11 launch, according to an article in the New York Times on March 8, 2019. Feist also detailed the recordings by minute and second, making it easier for the documentary team to sync up audio and video sequences.
  • Several of the recordings captured by the astronauts during the mission are featured in this documentary. These recordings by Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins earned them honorary memberships in the American Society of Cinematographers.
  • During the shots of the crowds waiting to view the launch (at approx the 17 minute mark), The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson (1962) host Johnny Carson can be seen in attendance.
  • The Universal Studios ident/logo at the start of the film is the version used in 1969.
  • The filmmakers were given pretty much unrestricted access to the NASA film archives. Much of the footage used contains alternative camera angles and footage that has not been used before in any other moon landing documentary. The film footage was preserved in ideal archival conditions by NASA since it was shot fifty years ago so needed very little restoration work because of this.
  • During the shots of the crowds waiting to view the launch, science fiction author Isaac Asimov can be seen being interviewed.
  • Before the lunar ascent a flight controller refers to command module pilot Michael Collins as having kept things going, "pocketa-pocketa-pocketa." This is a reference to the James Thurber 1939 short story, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, who undertakes great imaginary adventures in which he is always the courageous hero. The "pocketa-pockets" sound of his old automobile is heard throughout his fantasies, first as the engine sound of a Navy "hydroplane", then as a machine dispensing surgical anesthesia, and a World War I flamethrower. The flight controller is kidding Collins as if he were Walter Mitty in the role of the heroic pilot of a space ship.
  • On one occasion a journalist asked Neil Amstrong what he had to say to those who deny that he was there, and replied that he was not worried: "They will return there and find the remains."
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