Scarlett Johansson To Fake The Moon Landing For NASA In Upcoming Romantic Comedy “Fly Me To The Moon”

14th May 2024
Scarlett Johansson To Fake The Moon Landing For NASA In Upcoming Romantic Comedy “Fly Me To The Moon”

The moon landing is a truly iconic event in human history, symbolizing our ability to reach beyond the confines of Earth. Yet, some people still wonder if it really happened or if it was fake. This uncertainty sets the stage for the upcoming American romantic comedy-drama film “Fly Me to the Moon.” 

The movie is set against the backdrop of the 1960s Space Race. The plot delves into the relationship between a marketing expert and a NASA director. Blending real Apollo history with an intriguing romantic story, the film promises an engaging storyline!

Fly me to the Moon poster
Credit: Sony Pictures

Studio: Sony Pictures

  • Genre: satirical comedy
  • Director: Greg Berlanti
  • Countries of origin: US and UK
  • Filming locations: Cape Canaveral, Florida, USA(Shooting at Kennedy Space Center March 2023)
  • Production companies: Apple Studios, These Pictures
  • Screenplay: Rose Gilroy
  • Executive Producer: Robert J. Dohrmann
  • Based upon the story: Bill Kirstein & Keenan Flynn

Fly Me To The Moon’s Cast

The film stars Scarlett Johansson, Channing Tatum, Nick Dillenburg, Anna Garcia, Jim Rash, Noah Robbins, Colin Woodell, Christian Zuber, Donald Elise Watkins, Ray Romano, and Woody Harrelson.

Production Of Fly Me To The Moon

In March 2022, Apple Studios announced they were making a movie about the Space Race, named Project Artemis. Scarlett Johansson and Chris Evans were set to star, with Jason Bateman directing. But in May, Bateman said they might change the title. Later, he left the project because of disagreements and Greg Berlanti took over. This delayed the movie, and Evans had to leave too. Channing Tatum negotiated to replace him. Jim Rash joined the cast in September, and later Ray Romano, Anna Garcia, and Woody Harrelson also joined.

Fly me to the Moon cast
Credit: Apple TV

Filming started in Atlanta in October 2022, and the movie was planned to be released on 12th July, 2024. By December 2023, it wasn’t called Project Artemis anymore. In April 2024, it was revealed the new title was Fly Me to the Moon, with Daniel Pemberton making the music.

Fly me to the Moon launch control center
Channing Tatum and Ray Romano in the Launch Control Center. Credit: Sony Pictures

Fly Me To The Moon Release Date

Flying into theatres on 12th July 2024, Fly Me To The Moon will be released by Columbia Pictures in the US and Canada, and distributed through Sony Pictures Releasing. Following its theatrical run, the film will be available for streaming on Apple TV+. 

The excitement of anticipation arose with the release of the first trailer on 8th April 2024, coinciding with the announcement of the movie’s anticipated release date. Before you go on reading, we invite you to catch a glimpse of the trailer:

A Story Behind Fly Me to the Moon

Now let’s briefly review the plot. Fly Me To The Moon humorously depicts NASA’s challenges in getting public support for the moon mission in the 1960s. Scarlett Johansson plays Kelly Jones, a marketing expert hired to help NASA. She teams up with Cole Davis, played by Channing Tatum, who’s in charge of the mission. Together, they come up with a plan to stage a fake moon landing as a backup. 

This romantic comedy takes place during the intense Space Race between the United States and the Soviet Union, simultaneously showing the relationship between Kelly and Cole as they work on the historic mission.

Questions Around The History Behind The Movie

The trailer and synopsis from Columbia Pictures and Apple Original Films describe “Fly Me to the Moon” as a comedy-drama that unfolds against the backdrop of NASA’s monumental Apollo 11 moon landing.

However, while inspired by true events, the movie takes some creative liberties, such as showing a fake moon landing, which didn’t happen in real life. Another departure from reality in the film is a scene depicting the horizontal integration of a Saturn V rocket and a Saturn IB on a mobile launch platform with an umbilical tower. In fact, this configuration was not utilized until the Skylab program, deviated from historical accuracy.

A Historic Context Of Apollo 11 Mission

The historic Apollo 11 mission took place on 20th July, 1969. During it, astronauts Neil Armstrong and Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin became the first people to set foot on the moon. They spent about two and a half hours conducting experiments, collecting samples, and taking photographs before returning to Earth. This historic event marked the culmination of years of effort and innovation by NASA and its partners.

Apollo 11
Buzz Aldrin stands on the Moon during the Apollo 11 Mission. Credit: NASA

Was The Moon Landing Fake: That’s The Question

The trailer for the Apple Original comedy film Fly Me To The Moon sparks serious questions about its historical background. For instance, it shows Kelly’s team and NASA resorting to desperate measures, including filming a fake moon landing as a backup plan. This raises questions about whether marketing teams were involved in shaping public perception of the Apollo 11 mission and whether NASA faked the moon landing or not.

Conspiracy Theories Around Moon Landing

There are different conspiracy theories suggesting that the Apollo moon landing was faked by NASA and the U.S. government. Their proponents argue that the footage and photographs were staged on Earth. Some of them point to discrepancies in photographs, the absence of stars in the sky, and the waving flag on the lunar surface, which sceptics claim should not be possible in the vacuum of space.

Apollo Moon landing
Credit: Royal Museums Greenwich

Even though there is solid proof that the moon landing really happened, some people still believe in conspiracy theories. 

While TV shows and movies often depict the moon landing as a widely celebrated event, they rarely explore the doubts and uncertainties among the American public leading up to it. Fly Me To The Moon promises to focus on how NASA tackled this challenge. This movie is probably meant to make fun of conspiracy theories. However, some people might find it another confirmation of rumours.

Anyway, it will be very interesting to see how this controversy plays out in Fly Me To The Moon — looking forward to July!

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