Imax and Imagine Documentaries have formed a five-year production and distribution agreement, a slate which will include movies on the subjects of space, exploration, natural sciences, music, civilization, society and more. The first title to be released under the agreement is Eliza McNitt’s Mars 2080 in 2022, produced by Apollo 13‘s Brian Grazer and Ron Howard, as well as Imagine’s Justin Wilkes. Mars 2080 will immerse viewers inside a colony on Mars set 60 years in the future.
The movie is based on a concept by Stephen Petranek, science writer and author of How We’ll Live on Mars. The original concept follows a mother and daughter displaced from Earth by climate change, who make the difficult journey to Mars, adjusting to life with hundreds of thousands of people from different countries living together and forming a new civilization unencumbered by the mistakes of their past. P&G’s research scientists who are developing sustainable manufacturing, products, packaging and technology for the future are working with the filmmakers to project what a Mars habitat living could look like a half century from now. The pic is billed to be a blend of real science, innovative technologies, breathtaking VFX and human drama.
The Handmaids Tale‘s Lynn Renee Maxcy co-wrote with McNitt. EPs are Michael Rosenberg and Marc Gilbar for Imagine; and Kimberly Doebereiner, VP, Future of Advertising representing P&G Studios. Imagine Documentaries’ Meredith Kaulfers is co-EP.
“The unique ability of humans to look past the horizon and into the great beyond has always been vital to pushing society forward, perhaps now more than ever. IMAX has always sought to immerse audiences in inspiring visions of the future. Now, with the incredibly creative minds at Imagine as our partners, and with the innovators at P&G for Mars 2080, we’ll have the opportunity to bring even more life-changing experiences to moviegoers all around the world,” said Megan Colligan, President of Imax Entertainment in a statement.
“With Mars all over the news, the once-distant dream of humankind traveling there is now well within our reach”, said Wilkes. “In the meantime, we hope that our film will inspire audiences from around the world, school children to adults, to take their own journey to Mars through the magic of this Imax experience.”
McNitt is an Emmy Awards Finalist and recipient of the VR Grand Prize at The Venice Film Festival. She created the VR journey Spheres which was executive produced by Darren Aronofsky and starred the voices of Millie Bobby Brown, Jessica Chastain, and Patti Smith. Spheres became the first ever acquisition of a VR experience out of Sundance. Maxcy wrote the first three seasons of Hulu/MGM’s The Handmaid’s Tale, on which she won two Writers Guild Awards. Her interactive feature The Complex was released worldwide last year.
Imax and Imagine first worked together on Apollo 13, which was the first 35MM live-action film ever to be digitally remastered with proprietary IMAX DMR technology. The two companies also worked on the first Imax film ever, Tiger Child, which debuted at Expo ’70 in Osaka, Japan. Imax cameras have been sent into space 24 times, which is more than any human being, on such titles as Space Station, A Beautiful Planet, Asteroid Hunters and more.