New film produced by actor Tom Hanks titled, “Beyond All Boundaries” has opened at the National World War II Museum in New Orleans today. The film was shown exclusively at the Victory Theater which include “4-D” elements such as “props, simulated winds and shaking seats. Images from Pearl Harbor to the wintry Battle of the Bulge – the final major German offensive against the Allies – are shown on a 120-foot-wide screen,” blog.taragana.com reported.
The film also includes vintage film footage, animation and real-time sensory effects. Hanks said, “This is just not a widescreen movie. There’s actual things that pop up, actual elements that come into it that puts you in the environment.”
The Victory Theater was specifically built for “Beyond All Boundaries” during the $300 million museum expansion that will continue through 2015. The museum’s president and CEO Gordon “Nick” Mueller said, “We think of it as a World War II museum history park with a variety of things to engage visitors. It’s going to be very special.”
Tom Hanks, who has also starred in Hollywood war-based movies such as “Saving Private Ryan” and produced on “Band of Brothers” and “The Pacific”, said that the making of “Beyond All Boundaries” took a total of five years. Hanks wanted to capture “the economic and human costs and the war’s roots in the civil rights and women’s rights movements.”
He said, “We had a Jim Crow society when all that happened. We still had segregated armed forces … We asked guys to go off and risk their lives and come back home and ride in the back of the bus. There was no way that brand of injustice could continue in our country after that war.”
The film’s creative director, Phil Hettema said, “We all kind of understood from the beginning that this is an important story to tell. It’s a seminal moment in our country’s history and who we are today. Our notion of who we are as Americans was forged by World War II.”
To make it even more realistic, Hettema also added real props to the viewing experience, such as a 1940s radio (for the Pearl Harbor news broadcast in the film), and a prop of the concentration camp guard tower.
The celebration for the opening of this film will continue throughout the weekend with a Victory Stomp block party and the honoring of Stephen Ambrose on Sunday, who was the museum’s founder. Hanks have also volunteered to help raise money for the museum from its initial inception back in 1990s. “I feel like I’ve been lucky to be a part of the building blocks of something that, in a perfect world, will last forever,” Hanks said.