FLIGHT OF THE BUTTERFLIES OPENS AT OMNIMAX® THEATER AT THE MUSEUM OF SCIENCE AND INDUSTRY, CHICAGO
Film captures one of the longest migrations on Earth and the inspiring true story of one scientist's stunning discovery
Chicago (February 27, 2014)—Flight of the Butterflies, a breathtaking new giant screen adventure from SK Films, is flying into the Omnimax® Theater at the Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago on February 27, 2014.
Based on a remarkable true story, the epic film immerses audiences in a triumphant journey of perseverance that spans thousands of miles and several generations – tracking real monarch butterflies to their mysterious Mexican winter haven, where audiences will discover a truly spectacular sight: hundreds of millions of live butterflies in one of the most amazing places on Earth.
Flight of the Butterflies is the awe-inspiring story of two unlikely heroes that share a common strength. Based on true events, it follows the epic journey of the iconic monarch butterfly in one of the most incredible migrations on Earth, and the determined scientist, Dr. Fred Urquhart, who spent 40 years trying to discover the mysteries surrounding their journey and secret winter hideaway.
What began with a small boy daydreaming about where butterflies went each winter became a lifelong pursuit by Urquhart, who ingeniously enlisted the help of legions of volunteers, known as "citizen scientists," to help tag and track the butterflies. The decades-long quest yielded the ultimate discovery of the overwintering sites of monarch butterflies in the sanctuaries of Mexico.
Through spectacular Omnimax® technology, audiences are transported into the tiny world of one of these intrepid creatures. Dana (Danaus plexippus) begins the journey north from Mexico, a voyage that is completed by her offspring as they migrate through the U.S.to Canada and back south again, ultimately reaching the captivating hidden butterfly sanctuaries set 10,000 feet high in the mountains of Mexico.
The iconic monarch butterfly is a true marvel of nature. Weighing less than a penny, it makes one of the longest migrations on Earth across a continent, with pinpoint navigational accuracy, to a place it has never been. While much has been learned, scientists are still unraveling the many inter-related aspects of this phenomenon of the natural world. As the film illustrates, it takes two to three generations of butterflies to migrate north from Mexico to Canada and one "super generation" to complete the migration back south to Mexico.
In the expansive Omnimax® environment, moviegoers experience this journey up close and see the evolution from egg, to caterpillar, to chrysalis, to butterfly, captured for the first time through MRI and micro CT scans that bring audiences closer to the action than ever before. The film team also travels high into the mountain ranges and up tree canopies into the Monarch sanctuaries of Mexico to capture stunning footage of hundreds of millions of these magnificent creatures.
In 2008, UNESCO declared the monarch butterfly reserve in Mexico a World Heritage Site. Monarch butterflies depend on milkweed and milkweed habitats for survival. Despite efforts by the Mexican government to protect the sanctuaries, enforcement is difficult in remote regions and several forces persist in threatening the survival of the monarch butterfly migration, including degradations of forest habitats, the side effects of industrial farming and climate change.
The world's top monarch butterfly experts, including Dr. Chip Taylor, Dr. Karen Oberhauser and Dr. Lincoln Brower, served as scientific advisors to the film. Major support in the creation of the film has also come from the Federal Government of Mexico (Environment & Tourism) and the States of México and Michoacán, as well as from Coca-Cola FEMSA and Grupo Bimbo.
Flight of the Butterflies will show daily at 10 a.m., noon and 2 p.m. (on days with extended hours, there will also be a 4 p.m. showtime) in the Omnimax® Theater at the Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago from February 27 through summer 2014. Flight of the Butterflies is not included in Museum Entry and requires an additional timed entry ticket. Tickets for Omnimax® films are available in Explorer ticket packages.
About the Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago (MSI)
The Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago (MSI), one of the largest science museums in the world, offers world-class and uniquely interactive experiences that inspire inventive genius and foster curiosity. From groundbreaking and award-winning exhibits that can’t be found anywhere else, to hands-on opportunities that make you the scientist—a visit to MSI is where fun and learning mix. Through its Center for the Advancement of Science Education (CASE), the Museum offers a variety of student, teacher and family programs that make a difference in communities and contribute to MSI’s larger vision: to inspire and motivate children to achieve their full potential in science, technology, medicine and engineering. Come visit and find your inspiration! MSI is open 9:30–4 p.m. every day except Thanksgiving and Christmas day. Extended hours, until 5:30 p.m., are offered during peak periods. The Museum is grateful for the support of its donors and guests, who make its work possible. MSI is also supported in part by the people of Chicago through the Chicago Park District. For more information, visit msichicago.org or call (773) 684-1414 or (800) GO-TO-MSI outside of the Chicago area.
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