No matter what the studio tells you, Apollo 18 is absolutely, positively not a legitimate documentary. Seriously. Don’t believe a word of it.
That’s the message from NASA this week as the found-footage horror film hits theaters promising to reveal the scary secrets behind the U.S. space agency’s previously unreported mission to moon in 1974 — and more importantly, the reason we never went back. (Spoiler: It involves aliens.)
The Weinstein Co. has been touting the film as a work of nonfiction, and claiming all of the footage was “found.”
Over at the L.A. Times, NASA press liaison Bert Ulrich tells a different story.
“Apollo 18 is not a documentary,” said Ulrich. “The film is a work of fiction, and we always knew that. We were minimally involved with this picture. We never even saw a rough cut. The idea of portraying the Apollo 18 mission as authentic is simply a marketing ploy. Perhaps a bit of a ‘Blair Witch Project’ strategy to generate hype.”
While NASA has typically collaborated with studios looking to make sure the “science” portion of their science-fiction films makes sense, the agency declined to cooperate with the Apollo 18 team due to its insistence that the film be framed as fact instead of fiction.
Nevertheless, Apollo 18 hits theaters this weekend without NASA’s input and without any advance press screenings of the film (which usually isn’t a good sign).
Since we probably won’t get a chance to check it out this weekend, we’re going to venture a guess and say the movie’s alien beasties turn out to be Tribbles. Please, please let us be right.