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Spaceship Earth Will Land at Drive-In Movie Theaters Next Weekend

Posted 2020/05/01 0

The theatrical experience, for the most part, has been inaccessible for people in the U.S. for about a month and a half. Theaters aren’t expected to open back up until at least July, which means lovers of cinema, as well as distributors, have had to get creative with new movies. Case in point, Neon has come up with a clever and unique way to handle their latest release, Spaceship Earth, which will be coming to a drive-in near you next week.

Spaceship Earth is a documentary that chronicles a crazy, yet very real, scientific experiment that took place in the 90s involving a quarantine. Quite timely, as it turns out. Neon picked up the rights to the movie after it debuted at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, generating quite a bit of buzz. The original plan was to do a theatrical release. Since that isn’t possible, they’ve opted to get creative, turning to the drive-in theaters that are open around the country, as well as Hulu, VOD platforms and “Virtual Cinemas,” which have become a thing in recent weeks.

Drive-ins were very much a relic of the past until the current shutdown. Amazingly, they have now become a haven for movie lovers during the quarantine. Spaceship Earth joins movies like IFC’s The Wretched in making use of these theaters to bring audiences something new at an unprecedented time. Director Matt Wolf had this to say.

“While making this film, I never could have imagined that a pandemic would require the entire world to be quarantined… In light of [current events], we are all living like biospherians, and we too will reenter a new world. The question is how will we be transformed? Now with a visceral sense of the fragility of our world, it’s on us to protect it.”

Spaceship Earth is the true, stranger-than-fiction, adventure that centers on eight visionaries. Beginning in 1991, this group spent two years quarantined inside of a self-engineered replica of Earth’s ecosystem called Biosphere 2. The experiment became a worldwide phenomenon, chronicling daily existence in the face of life-threatening ecological disaster and a growing criticism that it was nothing more than a cult. The 1996 Pauly Shore comedy Bio-Dome was loosely inspired by the events.

The documentary features John Allen, Tony Burgess, Freddy Dempster, Kathelin Gray, Linda Leigh, Mark Nelson, Sally Silverstone, Marie Harding, Kathy Dyhr and Larry Winokour. A trailer has been released, which we’ve included for you to check out as well. Critics who have screened the movie have been quite kind thus far, as it currently holds an 82 percent approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

There are many questions about the future of the movie business. For now, those questions have precious few answers, but releases such as this are paving the way for drive-ins to become a part of that future. Neon hasn’t yet released a full list of participating drive-in theaters, so be sure to check local listings.

Spaceship Earth poster
Ryan Scott at Movieweb

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