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WASHINGTON — The world is not coming to an end on December 21, 2012, the US space agency insisted Monday in a rare campaign to dispel widespread rumors fueled by the Internet and a new Hollywood movie. The latest big screen offering from Sony Picture, "2012," arrives in theaters on Friday, with a 200-million-dollar production about the end of the world supposedly based on myths backed by the Mayan calendar. The doomsday scenario revolves around claims that the end of time will come as an obscure Planet X -- or Nibiru -- heads toward or collides with Earth. The mysterious planet was supposedly discovered by the Sumerians, according to claims by pseudo-scientists, paranormal activity enthusiasts and Internet theorists.
Q: What is the origin of the prediction that the world will end in 2012?
A: The story started with claims that Nibiru, a supposed planet discovered by the Sumerians, is headed toward Earth. This catastrophe was initially predicted for May 2003, but when nothing happened the doomsday date was moved forward to December 2012.