Friday, March 6, 2015


A new giant screen film adventure takes audiences on an extraordinary journey into unseen worlds and hidden dimensions beyond our normal vision to uncover the mysteries of things too fast, too slow, too small or simply invisible. On Friday, March 6 Fernbank Museum of Natural History’s IMAX® Theatre will premiere MYSTERIES OF THE UNSEEN WORLD, an original production by National Geographic Entertainment and Days End Pictures, narrated by Forest Whitaker.

MYSTERIES OF THE UNSEEN WORLD uses innovative high-speed and time-lapse photography, electron microscopy, and nanotechnology, to transport audiences to an enthralling secret world of nature, events, and breathtaking phenomena not visible to the naked eye.

“The premise of this new giant screen film experience is looking at the world through a variety of imaging technologies that allow audiences to see beyond what they can with the naked eye and gain a new vision of the world around them,” said producer Jini Dürr.

We see only a fraction of the millions of wavelengths in the vast electromagnetic spectrum--the rainbow of light waves called visible light. The film shows audiences what it would be like if we had infrared vision like a mosquito, or the ability to see through ultraviolet light like a bee. Audiences also experience X-ray vision and gain firsthand insights about what Gamma rays, microwaves and radio waves show us.

Time-lapse images capture mundane events that happen too slowly for humans to perceive.  The film shows plants creeping toward the sun and astonishingly complex “slime mold” searching for food. On a grander scale, time-lapse allows audiences our planet in motion—from the vast and relentless sweep of nature to the restless movement of humanity.

High-speed cameras do the opposite of time-lapse, revealing secrets from the super-fast world of nature. The film shows slow motion sequences of events that happen too quickly for human perception: a rattlesnake strike; drum cymbals reverberating; a Eurasian Eagle Owl flexing its wings; a basilisk lizard running on the surface of water; popcorn popping; lightning rising upwards from the ground as well as striking from the sky.

The film also peers into the world of wonders too small for the human eye to see--from the minute structures on a butterfly’s wing and the tiny organisms that inhabit the human body, all the way down to nano-scale structures. See how electron microscopes create images that magnify things by as much as a million times--revealing a world that is both bizarre and beautiful. Guess which unusual image is a fruit fly’s eye, the skin of a shark, a flea on a cat, a tomato stem, an eggshell, and more.

MYSTERIES OF THE UNSEEN WORLD then moves from the familiar events of everyday life to the building blocks of matter itself. The filmmakers worked with a medical animation company to depict the atom-scale realm of nano-science and potential innovations in nanotechnology. In a complex zoom sequence, the shot moves in on a spider, then a strand of its silk, then into the silk itself where audiences see a bacterium. The camera then zooms even deeper, in on a virus on the bacterium, then into the DNA of the virus and finally into the actual atoms of the DNA.

MYSTERIES OF THE UNSEEN WORLD is funded in part by a grant from the National Science foundation and generous support from Lockheed Martin and FEI, a manufacturer of electron microscopes.

“This film provides a unique look at the world around us, showing us breathtaking events that are invisible to our naked eye,” said Kaden Borseth, a physical science educator at Fernbank. “We’re excited to be able to provide guests an opportunity to view the world around them in a whole new and exciting way.”

MYSTERIES OF THE UNSEEN WORLD will show daily at Fernbank Museum of Natural History’s IMAX® Theatre from March 6 until July 17, 2015. MYSTERIES OF THE UNSEEN WORLD will show in the IMAX Theatre opposite Humpback Whales (Humpback Whales closes June 18). IMAX tickets are $13 for adults, $12 for students and seniors, $11 for children 12 and younger, and $8 for Museum members. Upgrade to a Value Pass (includes IMAX and Museum admission) to see The Power of Poison and enjoy two great experiences with one visit. (See Value Pass prices at

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