The Voyagers: A Short Film About Earth’s Greatest Hits

Documentary filmmaker Penny Lane (yes, that’s her real name) put together this little film that combines history and space exploration into a beautiful love letter.

The Voyagers, narrated in the form of a personal missive, tells the backstory of the Golden Record which accompanied both Voyager spacecraft on their journey outside the solar system. Lane and her then-soon-to-be husband hit on the idea of making short films for each other to be shown at their wedding, and this film came from that idea. She told The Atlantic, “I figured even if it were a crap movie, it would be a great wedding present.”

With the help of astronomer Carl Sagan, NASA produced a special disc that was affixed to each craft. The binary-encoded records, encoded for playback by anyone or any thing that may someday find them, include descriptions of planet Earth, along with maps to find us, and sounds and images of the animals, plants and machines one finds here.

In the process of compiling the records to be sent infinitely into deep space, Sagan and the project’s creative director Ann Druyan fell in love. But no more spoilers. Here’s the film…

You can hear the entire Voyager Golden Record – including its messages from the United Nations Secretary General, President Carter and greetings in 55 languages – on Apple Music, iTunes and Spotify.

See more of Penny Lane’s short films on Vimeo.