Blog Archives

Happy Star Trek 50th Anniversary

Hey Chasers!

Yesterday marked Star Trek’s 50th birthday! September 8th 1966 saw the first episode of Trek as we know it now with Kirk, Spock…and Bones…though he took that day off.

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Star Trek has been an enormous inspiration in my life. Trek was what first brought my heart and mind to the stars. Some of my earliest memories are of watching the Original Series movies. The first movie I remember seeing in a theatre was Star Trek IV. I flew a die cast Klingon Bird of Prey around a paper cut out sun suspended from our apartment ceiling to make it go back in time and save the whales. The show was not only my gateway to the wider universe I perceived out there, but the stories of camaraderie and IDIC (Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations) became virtues that are foundational to my life. I was raised by Trek. Even when I didn’t go into sciences, my undergrad in international studies was founded upon Trek inspiration. In my mind, the crew of the Enterprise was travelling through the Universe and doing good, so too then would I in the world if I couldn’t in the stars.

To celebrate Trek’s 50th, we’ve put together a tribute video made from interviews with Trek cast, crew, and fans over the years. We’re so humbled by their willingness to be a part of our story especially since I have felt like a part of theirs.

Live Long and Prosper!

2015 In Review: Sky’s Calling – and 2016: Chasing’s Completion

Hello Chasers!

2015 was one of the most incredible years for our project. (I have been remiss in updating all of you. I will speak more about my absence at the end.) Each year that we have worked on the film, I look back and think “well…it can’t get any more amazing!” This past year, the film’s themes became clearer, we shot more incredible interviews in awesome settings (like the Enterprise), and I felt the most emotionally connected to the project than I ever have. We found our focus in 2015. When we first began Chasing Atlantis, the film was a story about going to see a space shuttle launch and understanding the shuttle’s technological legacy. Now, four years and change later, I see that the film is really a story about WHY I wanted to see a space shuttle launch. Outside the facility where Atlantis now resides is a quote by Carl Sagan “The Sky Calls to Us.” But how? Why do those shimmering lights in the night captivate us? This is what Chasing Atlantis has become for me; a journey to understand that call and to connect with those that hear it as well.

Matt Cimone with Carl Sagan Quote

Carl Sagan’s quote outside of the Atlantis Facility at the Kennedy Space Center

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ThunderCon

ThunderCon Banner

Hey Chasers,

Today (Sunday Oct 25th) Is ThunderCon! ThunderCon is a first ever comic convention being hosted in Thunder Bay, Ontario Canada…our home town!

We will have a booth open all day on the convention floor at the Valhalla Inn where the convention is being hosted. And I’ll be giving a talk in the “Cantina” at from 4pm to 5:30pm

Thunder Bay is where my geek began. During the 80’s and 90’s, geek culture was not nearly as prolific. To see a convention in my home town is amazing and my congratulations to all the event coordinators. To have Chasing Atlantis invited to present is such an honour. I spent the evening yesterday walking past houses of friends who have since moved away remembering long D&D and video game sessions. I write this blog post from my old room where I spent evenings watching NEW Star Trek episodes, Sojourner’s landing on Mars, and Discovery Channel documentaries about the Space Shuttle. Now we’re back with an opportunity to meet a rallied geek community in my home town showing off interviews we’ve done with those who created Trek and built the probes that went to Mars, and flew the Shuttle. I am at once humbled and proud.

If you’re at ThunderCon this weekend, please be sure to visit our booth and check out our talk at 4pm!

http://thundercon.org/

Keep Chasing!

-Matthew

Seattle Museum of Flight Full Fuselage Trainer: North America Tour 2

Hey Chasers!

We’re continuing with the updates of our amazing second North America Tour of late July/Early August that are “backblogged.” Apologies for the delay. Real life caught up with me for August/September orientation and student move-ins at Simon Fraser University. Now that all the new generation of students have arrived on residence, where I live and work, it was time to review the rest of the incredible locations/interviews of this recent trip. (By the Way. Simon Fraser University is considered to be like Sci-Fi Headquarters. It has been a filming set for Battlestar Galactica, Halo: Forward Unto Dawn, Underworld. Very cool place to visit if you are in BC)

Following our meetup with Bill Nye (BILL BILL BILL) in Los Angeles we headed North to the Seattle Museum of Flight.  Within the Museum’s many awesome exhibits ranging from WWII combat aircraft, an actual retired Concorde, an SR-71 Blackbird, and hands-on simulator experiences is the Full Fuselage Shuttle Trainer. 

Full Fuselate Shuttle Trainer at the Seattle Museum of Flight

Full Fuselate Shuttle Trainer at the Seattle Museum of Flight

The Full Fuselage Trainer (FFT) is a 1:1 scale replica of the Shuttle itself used to train every astronaut who ever flew to space on any of the shuttle missions. From Chris Hadfield to Story Musgrave to John Glenn, all these astronauts stepped foot in the FFT. It is as close as one can get to being in the shuttle without actually being in the shuttle; something that nobody will ever do again.

The Museum of Flight let us get inside the trainer and grab some incredible footage. While we were filming, Paul asked me to sit down in the command chair; the left seat in the cockpit. Seated before the accurate controls of what one would find in the shuttle, I was thrust into the life of what might have been; the life of a space-farer – an astronaut. The moment hit me harder than I had anticipated, which Paul keenly captured on film. It struck me that while the astronaut that I had always hoped to be was a driving force behind this film, that dream has also been a source of shame; that I had, in a sense, failed. I have always been vaguely aware of this sentiment toward my not becoming an astronaut. There is often a lingering sense that I made an error, or should have done something differently. Trying to determine all of one’s motivations for decisions made over a decade ago is difficult. I believe that, at the time, I choose to study arts rather than sciences, I did so for the right reasons and intentions.

Full Fuselage Shuttle Trainer (FFT)  with Matt Cimone (left) and Paul Muzzin (right)

Full Fuselage Shuttle Trainer (FFT) with Matt Cimone (left) and Paul Muzzin (right)

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North America Tour 2: Shuttles, Space Camp, Astronaut Abby, SpaceVidCast and Bill NYE!

Hey Chasers!

Paul and I just landed last night in Los Angeles. We have a pretty exciting lineup of interviews and visits setup on this trip. Seems that each time we think production is coming to a close, another incredible opportunity arises. On our last North America Tour, we started in Montreal and ended in Vancouver while visiting the Canadian Space Agency, the Kennedy Space Center, I Dream of Space, Planetary Resources, and finally interviews at Simon Fraser University with particle physicist and amateur astronomy Howard Trottier.

This time around we are beginning in LA with Bill Nye tomorrow (very excited about this) at the Planetary Society, heading to the Seattle Museum of Flight to grab footage of their shuttle trainer that was used to actually prepare future astronauts, then spending 3 days at Space Camp in Huntsville Alabama to meet Astronaut Abby, and finally returning to LA to meetup with the team at SpaceVidCast. More interviews to follow in Montreal in September.

Shuttle Trainer at the Seattle Museum of Flight

Shuttle Trainer at the Seattle Museum of Flight

 

Remember! We have an amazing opportunity posted for you to contribute to our line up of questions for Bill Nye tomorrow (July 25th) ! Follow this link to ASK BILL NYE A QUESTION

Bill Nye the Science Guy

Bill Nye the Science Guy

 

Stay tuned for more updates on North America Tour 2! We’ll keep posting in the next few days as we travel!

Keep Chasing!

Matthew

Two Years of Chasing Atlantis

Hey Chasers!

July 8th marks the second anniversary of Atlantis’ final liftoff from Earth.  Just a few days ago, Atlantis’ new home was opened to the public as she rests at a precise 43.21 degree angle, proudly displaying both her scored heat shielding and open cargo bay in celebration the Shuttle’s legacy. Oh yeah, and that’s the Canadarm extending from the bay if you hadn’t noticed it. (Below)

Shuttle Atlantis in New Shuttle Exhibit cr. Ryan Horan

Shuttle Atlantis in New Shuttle Exhibit cr. Ryan Horan

Two years ago, we were tightly huddled within a forest of tripod legs anxiously waiting to see if Atlantis would fly. Literally one million people stood beneath rain clouds in hopes of a patch of clear skies that would be needed to avoid a scrubbed mission. We only had one shot to capture the launch on film. If the mission were scrubbed, we didn’t have the funding at the time to make a return journey. Despite the weather and the risk, the million gathered on the shores; some having traveled much farther than us to witness this (potentially) historic moment. As you might know by now, the clouds did part, and just in time. At T – 30 minutes, those gathered around radios heard “Atlantis…you are go for launch” crackle through the radio. The roar of the crowd in celebration was second only to the  exuberance of the launch itself.

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Chasing Atlantis Yuri’s Night Celebration Trailer

In celebration of Yuri’s Night, Chasing Atlantis released a new trailer that yesterday was exclusive to those who participated in one of the over 300 parties around the world to celebrate humanity’s entry into the final frontier.

Today we are releasing the trailer online! Be sure to check it out!

Chasing Atlantis in “The Peak” Simon Fraser University News Paper

Hey Chasers,

In my other life, I work at Simon Fraser University in Residence Life. It’s an awesome gig. I get to work in a community of nearly 2000 students and family members who are all working toward incredible goals and dreams AND I get to incorporate my other projects, such as Chasing Atlantis, into the community here at the University such as when we interviewed SFU professor Howard Trottier last month. Another one of those overlaps between my space life and my University life recently happened with the SFU student newspaper. This week’s edition was a “Space” edition and they sought me out to talk about Chasing Atlantis. You can check out the article by clicking here or the title above.

-Keep Chasing

-Matt &8-)

We’re Live at Toronto Comicon!

Hey Chasers!

You may have seen some people dressed up like this at Comicon!

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CA Team (Mike and Paul in Tees) with interviewees Elaine, Adam and Ray (left to right)

If you see people running around in Chasing Atlantis Tees during the day or later this evening. Be sure to stop by and say hello. We have been doing interviews talking to folks at the convention about SPAAAACE and Science Fiction and in general sharing the #geeklove

I’ve been stationed here back in Vancouver but surfing the Twitterverse keeping up with the #torontocomicon and #comicon traffic. If you’re on twitter, be sure to follow those tags as well as #chasingatlantis to connect with us!

The team is, as of this very moment, about to line up for the Star Trek the Next Generation Reunion Panel! I’m so Jealous! In the meantime I’m watching the show on Netflix #nextbestthing

-Keep Chasing!

-Matthew &8-) 

Toronto Comicon in T-7 Hours!!

Hey Chasers!

We are going to be setup at Toronto Comicon this weekend! You have the chance to interact with our team, and even get interviewed and/or end up in the film credits! Plus we are running a cool promo this weekend during ComicCon to win a trip to SPAAAAAACE through I Dream of Space 

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ComicCon Weekend Promo

If you’re at the Toronto Comicon, be sure to Tweetup with us to find Paul and the camera crew. We’d love to geekout with you!

Keep Chasing!

-Matthew &8-)