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“First Man” Author to Appear at Heinz History Center

James R. Hansen, author of the authorized Neil Armstrong biography, will speak about the astronaut’s life on Nov. 1.




Photo by Daniel McFadden. © 2018 Universal Studios and Storyteller Distribution Co., LLC.

 

“First Man,” the Neil Armstrong biopic starring Ryan Gosling, debuted less than a week ago on Oct. 12; the film has quickly earned critical acclaim. Damien Chazelle’s film is based on the biography “First Man: The Life of Neil A. Armstrong” by James R. Hansen; Hansen will appear Nov. 1 at the Sen. John Heinz History Center for a talk dubbed “First Man: An Evening with James R. Hansen.”

Hansen was also a co-producer of the film. The Fort Wayne, Indian native was an authorized Armstrong biographer; the Auburn history professor developed a friendship with the first man to walk on the moon while working as a historian at NASA.

Hansen will share memories of Armstrong, reveal details about making the film and sign copies of his book. Guests will be granted after-hours access to the museum and are encouraged to visit “Destination Moon: The Apollo 11 Mission.” The exhibit, curated by the Smithsonian’s National Air & Space Museum, will appear at only four museums in the country.

The exhibit offers a close look at the Apollo 11 mission and gives guests a rare chance to see the Command Module “Columbia” — the living quarters for the 3-person crew on the mission to the moon. Dozens of other artifacts from the mission will be featured at the History Center, including objects and tools utilized by none other than crew members Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins.

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