For further information, please call:

Warren Betts, Touchstone Pictures’ “MISSION TO MARS,” 310.479.1305

Mission To Mars

Touchstone Pictures’ “MISSION TO MARS” will co-host authentic sounds and images from the surface of Mars

Begins December 3rd at

Planned around the Mars Polar Lander’s touchdown on December 3rd,
Touchstone Pictures’ “MISSION TO MARS” movie website will co-host, along
with the Planetary Society, authentic sounds and images from Mars as they
are returned from NASA’s Mars Polar Lander. The “MISSION TO MARS” website
will launch Thanksgiving Eve, November 24, at the above URL. Sounds and
images from the surface of Mars will begin December 3rd. This is the first
of NASA’s missions to Mars that will transmit images back to Earth to be
viewed in HDTV format. It is also the first mission to Mars with an
onboard microphone for listening for any audible sounds from the planet’s

The Planetary Society’s Planetfest ’99 is a major space science event and
being sponsored by Touchstone Pictures’ “MISSION TO MARS” movie, which is
scheduled for release in the U.S. and Canada March 2000.

Attendance at this year’s Planetfest, which begins Friday, December 3rd at
12:30noon and runs through Sunday, December 5th, is expected to be upward
of 20,000 people. Planetfest takes place in Los Angeles at the Pasadena
Convention Center, located at 300 East Green Street in Pasadena,
California. It is the only space science event where the public and the
news media can gather to witness real-time image, and sound, downloads from
the Mars Polar Lander. The Mars Polar Lander mission is controlled and
operated by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Labs (JPL) also in Pasadena. JPL is
NASA’s hub for Mars missions conducted by unmanned space probes. The last
such event at Planetfest was held two years ago during the Martian
Pathfinder mission.

Actors Gary Sinise and Jerry O’Connell, who star in “MISSION TO MARS,”
along with the film’s producer, Tom Jacobson, will appear on a special
panel at Planetfest to discuss the making of the film. Story Musgrave, who
served as a technical consultant to the movie, will also appear on this
panel, which is scheduled for 12:00noon, Saturday, December 4th. In
addition, actor Jerry O’Connell will host Planetfest’s Student Press
Conference beginning at 10:30a.m. Friday, December 3rd.

NASA signed a Space Act Agreement with the filmmakers of “MISSION TO MARS”
to participate in the making of the film. The producers and filmmakers of
the film worked closely with NASA during production to insure that the
science and technology portrayed in the film would be as accurate as
possible. (See the attached “MISSION TO MARS” Science Facts for details.)
NASA had representatives present on the set for the majority of production.
Consultants for the film included Robert Zubrin, President of the Mars
Society; former astronaut Story Musgrave, who repaired the Hubble Space
Telescope; Matt Golombek, Project Scientist of the Mars Pathfinder Mission;
and Dr. Kathryn Clark, Space Station Senior Scientist at NASA.

Among the many well-known attendees at this year’s Planetfest, the list
includes Buzz Aldrin, lunar module pilot on Apollo 11, which was the first
crew to land on the moon; Bill Nye the Science Guy; Sally Ride,
firstAmerican woman in space; Donna Shirley, former Manager of the Mars
Program; shuttle astronaut George Nelson; authors Kim Stanley Robinson and
Athena Andreadis; Lou Dobbs; and Kathy Sullivan, first American woman to
walk in space.

The “MISSION TO MARS” website, which will be online beginning November
24th, at, will replicate JPL’s Martian
Polar Lander site, and will also interconnect with The Planetary Society’s
Planetfest site. In addition, Touchstone Pictures’ “MISSION TO MARS” and
The Planetary Society will co-host the first sounds from the Martian
surface as they are returned to Earth by the Mars Polar Lander. The
website for The Planetary Society’s Planetfest event is

Touchstone Pictures’ “MISSION TO MARS” is about NASA’s first manned mission
to Mars. “MISSION TO MARS” is a Jacobson Company production of a Brian De
Palma film, directed by Brian De Palma and produced by Tom Jacobson. The
film stars Gary Sinise, Don Cheadle, Connie Nielsen, Jerry O’Connell and
Tim Robbins.

Touchstone Pictures’ “MISSION TO MARS” exhibit at Planetfest will host
items from the film’s set, including two Martian Rovers and Martian
spacesuits used in the film. In addition, the “MISSION TO MARS” exhibit
will host a gallery of giant-sized images from “MISSION TO MARS.” Computer
workstations displaying the “MISSION TO MARS” website and containing
Martian data from the film will also be available.

Linda Wong

The Planetary Society

65 N. Catalina Ave.

Pasadena, CA 91106-2301

Tel: (626) 793-5100 ext. 236

Fax: (626) 793-5528