Carl Sagan, the acclaimed astronomer, astrophysicist and author who introduced a whole generation to the wonders of the heavens with his bestselling “Cosmos” science book and TV series and made saying the phrase “billions and billions” so much fun, is getting a new documentary feature on his prolific career courtesy of NatGeo and Seth MacFarlane.
Per Deadline (opens in new tab), the starbound legend of Carl Sagan will live on in a mind-expanding project being produced by National Geographic Documentary Films in alliance with Fuzzy Door’s Seth MacFarlane and Erica Huggins, Emmy and Peabody winner Ann Druyan (Sagan’s life partner). Academy Award nominee Nanette Burstein (“On the Ropes,” “The Kid Stays in the Picture”) is aboard as the film’s director.
In addition to his many lifelong achievements, aptitude for teaching and inspiring voice in astronomy and cosmology, Sagan’s bestselling novel “Contact” was adapted by director Robert Zemeckis (“Back to the Future,” “Who Framed Roger Rabbit?”) into the Academy Award-nominated 1997 sci-fi feature starring Jodie Foster and Matthew McConaughey. Sadly, Sagan passed away at the age of 62 in 1996, just prior to the Hollywood movie’s theatrical release.
“Serving as an intimate and cinematic portrait of Sagan, the Untitled Carl Sagan Documentary will explore his love story with partner Ann Druyan and with science,” said National Geographic Documentary Films in an official statement.
“The film will include exclusive audio recordings, archival clips and animation, along with interviews with his family, friends and colleagues,” the statement continued. “With the full support of Sagan’s family and friends, the film will present a fascinating look into the life and career of one of the world’s most inspiring and revolutionizing scientists of our time.”
This comprehensive Carl Sagan documentary currently has no release date scheduled, but will be offered exclusively on National Geographic channels and Disney+ when completed.
“Carl Sagan was a groundbreaking and revolutionary scientist who decoded the complexity of the cosmos and made planetary science accessible and relevant to audiences around the world,” said Carolyn Bernstein, executive vice president of documentary films for National Geographic. “We are so excited to work with Nanette, Ann and Fuzzy Door to bring Sagan’s pioneering work and compelling personal story to a new generation of admirers.”
Producing partner Fuzzy Door is the creative shingle behind the hit shows “The Orville,” “Family Guy” and “American Dad!” and also produced the Peabody award-winning reboot of Sagan’s original “Cosmos” series, “Cosmos: A SpaceTime Odyssey,” which accumulated 13 Emmy nominations and was hosted by noted astrophysicist and science personality Neil deGrasse Tyson.
“Carl’s life is a multidimensional epic,” said executive producer Ann Druyan. “He was a pathfinder in the sciences and a force in the culture, articulating the numinous wonder of a science-based sense of the sacred. He is one of the greatest awakeners in our history, and I feel that with Nanette, Fuzzy Door, Hungry Man and NatGeo, I now have the right partners to tell his thrilling story.”