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‘Goodnight Opie’ about NASA’s rover mission may make you cry – SABC News

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When “Goodnight Opie,” which tells the story of NASA’s Opportunity and Spirit rovers before and after they landed on Mars, premiered at a film festival in September, the documentary had an unexpected effect on viewers: They cried.

“It’s funny because I promise you we didn’t have conversations in the editing room about how we were going to make people cry,” director Ryan White said. Reuters.

“The shocking reaction to this movie seems to be people shyly coming up to me with their hand over their mouth and saying, ‘I cried about a robot.’

The film, which premiered at the Telluride Film Festival in Colorado in September, tells the story of the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission that NASA launched in 2003.

Both solar-powered rovers were expected to live only 90 Martian solar days (SOLs), but Opportunity (or Oppy) lasted more than 14 years until it transmitted its final message on June 10, 2018.

White wanted to make the film after Opportunity’s latest message, “My battery is dead and it’s going dark,” went viral. However, it is the human characters that cause an emotional response in the film.

White believed that scientists and engineers would be very academic and unemotional, creating a problem for filmmaking. “I was wrong,” White said.

“When we met the human characters, it was an embarrassment of riches. These are the people who live day to day doing what we all dreamed of doing as children…and for them it’s not just a job. This is their life. This is their daughter on Mars as many of them see her.’

One of the main comparisons made by moviegoers is that the rovers bear an uncanny resemblance to the Pixar animated film Wall-E.

This film was released in 2008, after the landing of the rover.

“I think comparisons are inevitable when we’re making a doc about a little robot, alone on the planet,” White said.

“There’s something so emotional about that idea.”

Goodnight Opie, currently playing in select US theaters, will begin streaming on Amazon on November 23.

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