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NASA lost moon footage, but Hollywood restores it

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posted on Jul, 16 2009 @ 11:05 PM

WASHINGTON – NASA could put a man on the moon but didn't have the sense to keep the original video of the live TV transmission. In an embarrassing acknowledgment, the space agency said Thursday that it must have erased the Apollo 11 moon footage years ago so that it could reuse the videotape. But now Hollywood is coming to the rescue. The studio wizards who restored "Casablanca" are digitally sharpening and cleaning up the ghostly, grainy footage of the moon landing, making it even better than what TV viewers saw on July 20, 1969. They are doing it by working from four copies that NASA scrounged from around the world. "There's nothing being created; there's nothing being manufactured," said NASA senior engineer Dick Nafzger, who is in charge of the project. "You can now see the detail that's coming out."

Nafzger said a huge search that began three years ago for the old moon tapes led to the "inescapable conclusion" that 45 tapes of Apollo 11 video were erased and reused. His report on that will come out in a few weeks. The original videos beamed to Earth were stored on giant reels of tape that each contained 15 minutes of video, along with other data from the moon. In the 1970s and '80s, NASA had a shortage of the tapes, so it erased about 200,000 of them and reused them.

They "reused" the videotape? You gotta be kidding me! GAH! >_<

Man I hope some other country comes along real soon and beats us to the moon, at least that way there's less chance of it being censored, lost, or "reused"

jus ma 2 cents

posted on Jul, 16 2009 @ 11:57 PM
Moon walking made famous by Michael Jackson.
There wasn't much of a set needed as the Moon curvature
seemed very extreme.
Where did everything go.
Thinking one could see for miles we saw a black background.
Camera were strategically located by Moon goblins perhaps.
Living through that definitely made people say the government lies.

posted on Jul, 17 2009 @ 01:28 AM

posted on Jul, 17 2009 @ 04:07 AM
Wasn't there a thread a few days ago about NASA *finding* the lost moon footage? Now I'd like to know if they really have it or not, and whether it's just restored footage or the original.

posted on Jul, 19 2009 @ 01:19 AM
hmm, dont remember seeing that thread. all I know is that I understand that tape was (i guess) a rare things to come across (apparently) back when all this was going on but why didn't someone stand up and say "hey, that footage is important, we should save it?"

makes ya wonder

posted on Jul, 19 2009 @ 10:12 AM
The exact same thing happened to a lot of 60ies Doctor Who episodes. And you'd think the BBC has access to tapes. Doesn't really suprise that NASA did the same.

posted on Jul, 19 2009 @ 02:24 PM
The engineers who were tasked with providing the coverage of the moon landing were specifically told to "provide LIVE coverage of the landing" -- and that they did. The tapes were only meant as back-up jus in case something went wrong during the live broadcast.

After they DID provide the live video of the landing -- and thus the back-ups were not needed -- those "back-up" original tapes were set aside and forgotten about.

Years later, nobody realized they were "original back-ups" and they were erased and re-used, as was customary for that expensive recording media.

Video of the landing exists -- just not the original video but rather "second generation" recordings.

[edit on 7/19/2009 by Soylent Green Is People]

posted on Jul, 19 2009 @ 02:31 PM

Originally posted by debunky
The exact same thing happened to a lot of 60ies Doctor Who episodes. And you'd think the BBC has access to tapes. Doesn't really suprise that NASA did the same.

Bit different erasing a UK Sci-Fi TV series (complete with wobbly sets, and so on) to erasing the video record of what was supposed to be humanities crowning technical achievement!

posted on Jul, 19 2009 @ 03:28 PM
I think the lost footage they were referring too, was This
A documentary filmed during the Apollo program but thought lost forever, when a reporter tried to interview the maker of the film, he was shocked when he said he still had a copy under his desk.

I think somewhere out there has to be a copy of the landings, it was being tracked and recorded in several places, I have a feeling they are worried about it being seen for some reason, and IMO not because they didn't go, but because it was unedited and maybe something could be seen, just like when they use white noise when filming in orbit, I think the same effect was used back then just in case.

If I am right it is being shown Monday night in the UK on the Discovery channel, I know there is some lost footage being shown on that channel then, not 100% certain it is this footage however, they have been plugging it for over a week now.


posted on Jul, 19 2009 @ 06:53 PM
reply to post by azzllin

Yes -- they do have other copies of the landing. Like I said above, what was lost were the original tapes that were to be the back-up to the live broadcast (but they were not needed since the live broadcast worked perfectly).

Those back-up tapes would have been of the best quality because they were the first-generation tapes of the live broadcast rather than a copy made by others from that live broadcast.

Unfortunately those back-up copies (which, as I said, were probably the best copies) were what was lost and probably erased.

posted on Jul, 19 2009 @ 06:59 PM
I posted this to another thread, maybe fits here though.

Recently my job has brought me in contact with some folks that were very involved with the Apollo missions and have heard a number of stories from them. One in particular was interesting that I though I would share as we approach the anniversary.

Everything during these missions were scripted including who was to do what, when, where etc. If a switch was to be thrown, it was scripted. If a procedure was to be accomplished, it was scripted.

Well the story goes, Buzz Aldrin was originally supposed to be the first one down the ladder and walk on the moon, scripted of course. Neil Armstrong was the commander and this didn’t sit well with him so he pleaded his case to NASA. He felt that because he was the commander, it should be him to be the first. NASA agreed and changed the scenario, having Neil be the first down the ladder and or course making history. The script had been changed, no secrets, Buzz was aware this was changed.

Well one of the functions Buzz had was to be in charge of shooting the photos while they were on the surface of the moon. When they got back to earth after the mission, NASA reviewed the photo’s and to their surprise there was not one still photo of Neil from when they were on the surface. They asked Buzz why this was and he responded “It wasn’t in the script”.

So there is no still photo of Neil on the surface of the moon. There is video and selected frames from the videos but not one still photo. There is one catch to this, one photo of Buzz close up, shows Neil, as a reflection, in Buzz’s visor. No other still photo to this day, there apparently is no love lost between the two, either.

posted on Jul, 20 2009 @ 01:50 AM

Originally posted by spikey

Originally posted by debunky
The exact same thing happened to a lot of 60ies Doctor Who episodes. And you'd think the BBC has access to tapes. Doesn't really suprise that NASA did the same.

Bit different erasing a UK Sci-Fi TV series (complete with wobbly sets, and so on) to erasing the video record of what was supposed to be humanities crowning technical achievement!

I'd say yes and no.
It's just hard to imagine from todays "lets just burn it on a DVD" perspective. Media were bulkier, more expensive, a bit peskier about their storage, and degraded over time.
Not to mention that you need to convert the signal from the original tapes to video anyway.
Overwriting is a shame, no doubt, but from a 60ies & 70ies perspective understandable.

posted on Jul, 20 2009 @ 02:44 AM
No matter how hard they try to restore the tapes, that was an awful production all the way around. With most people's knowledge of video and photo editing today, the bag job becomes that much more obvious. Since people back then did not have computers, they did not know any better. With the advent of hi-def and hi-resolution, the originals had to be ditched so they could not be closely examined using today's powerful tools.

Besides, wouldn't a live transmission from another heavenly body severely go against National Security Policy - not only 40 years ago, but today as well? There are locations on this planet they don't want you to see. You think they'd just give you a free glimpse of the moon live with no way to edit the scenes? Live TV is ok for a football game, but there was a little too much riding on this one to just wing it with a live transmission.

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