Wanderers: Erik Wernquist’s Film is Worthy of Carl Sagan’s Voice

WANDERERSThe 21st century is likely to be the make-or-break moment of our civilization. The moment when we may go extinct – like the dinosaurs, or we may conquer the Universe – like Carl Sagan predicted…

Wanderers is a short science fiction film by Erik Wernquist – a digital artist and animator from Stockholm, Sweden.

The film is a vision of our humanity’s future expansion into the Solar System. Although admittedly speculative, the visuals in the film are all based on scientific ideas and concepts of what our future in space might look like, if it ever happens. All the locations depicted in the film are digital recreations of actual places in the Solar System, built from real photos and map data where available. For those interested in learning more of the places featured in the film, I recommend turning to the gallery section.

The title Wanderers refer partly to the original meaning of the word “planet”. In ancient greek, the planets visible in the sky were collectively called “aster planetes” which means “wandering star”. It also refers to ourselves; for hundreds of thousands of years – the wanderers of the Earth. In time I hope we take that leap off the ground and permanently become wanderers of the sky. Wanderers among the wanderers.

There film has no apparent story – other than what you might imagine for yourself – and the idea is primarily to show a glimpse of the fantastic and beautiful nature that surrounds us on our neighboring worlds – and above all, how it might appear to us if we were there.

As some may notice, Erik Wernquist has borrowed ideas and concepts from science fiction authors such as Kim Stanley Robinson and Arthur C. Clarke, just to name a few. And visually, of course, he owes a lot to painter Chesley Bonestell – the legendary master of space art.

More directly, Erik Wernquist has also borrowed the voice of astronomer and author Carl Sagan to narrate the film. The audio used is a collection of excerpts from Sagan’s own reading of his book Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space – needless to say, a huge inspiration for this film.

The film-maker admits he has no explicit permission to use the voice of Carl Sagan. But his hope is – as this is a completely non-profit production, made to enlighten and inspire – that whoever holds those rights today will approve of what he has done. I myself love the film and don’t think that Sagan will object lending his voice to carry such an inspirational message:

“Maybe it’s a little early… Maybe the time is not quite yet… But those other worlds – promising untold opportunities – beckon. Silently, they orbit the sun, waiting…”


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