July 1st, 1997 - December 31st, 2000 | PROJECT

The National Museum of Natural History is producing 3-D and 2-D versions of a large format film on natural history. With a working title of Wonders of Life, the film will explore the diversity of life on Earth and how this diversity came to be. It will examine the biological, geological, and cultural entities that interact in myriad ways to generate, shape, and sustain the enormous biological and cultural diversity of our planet. The film will be supported by outreach material designed to support further exploration of the topic of diversity in both informal and formal settings. An inexpensive family activity guide to be available at venues that show the film will feature engaging and challenging activities for families with children ages ten through 15. A teacher resource guide, distributed free to teachers attending the film with groups of students, will be developed for use in grades 5 through 8. A classroom activity poster will be developed to serve grades 2 through 5. A Wonders of Life home page will support in-depth study of the film's topics. Larry O'Reilly, Director of The Discovery Center Project at the NMNH, will be PI and Executive Producer for the film. The Senior Scientific Advisory Board will be chaired by Dr. Robert S. Hoffman, Senior Scientist and former Assistant Secretary for Science at the Smithsonian Institution. The board also includes Sir David Attenborough, Dr. Sylvia Earle, Dr. Margaret Geller, Ivan Hattingh, and Dr. Thomas Lovejoy. Dr. Kay Behrensmeyer, Curator of Paleobiology and former Associate Director for Science at the NMNH, will lead a core team of scientists who will be directly involved in production. The film will be produced by Christopher Parsons and David Douglas will be Director of Photography.

Project Website(s)

(no project website provided)

Team Members

Laurence O'Reilly, Principal Investigator, Smithsonian Institution


Funding Source: NSF
Funding Program: ISE/AISL
Award Number: 9705298
Funding Amount: 1563036


Audience: Educators | Teachers | Elementary School Children (6-10) | Families | General Public | Middle School Children (11-13) | Museum | ISE Professionals | Youth | Teen (up to 17)
Discipline: Geoscience and geography | Life science | Social science and psychology
Resource Type: Project Descriptions
Environment Type: Films and IMAX | Media and Technology