Beyond All Boundaries, Beyond All Boundaries tom hanks, Victory Theater new orleans
Cheryl Gerber/AP Photo
Victory Theater, part of a $300 million expansion of the National WWII Museum, was built to
show "Beyond All Boundaries,'' a war film produced by Tom Hanks, which opened on Nov. 3,
2009, in New Orleans.

Film Spotlights WWII and Could Boost New Orleans Tourism

November 04, 2009 02:15 PM
by Sarah Amandolare
A new Tom Hanks film marks the unveiling of elaborate additions to New Orleans’ National World War II Museum, underscoring the city’s reemergence.

New Orleans Gets a Cinematic Addition

On Nov. 6, the National World War II Museum in New Orleans will unveil $60 million renovations that include the Victory Theater, where a new 4-D World War II film by Tom Hanks will screen. According to The Washington Post, which has a gallery of photographs revealing the exterior and interior of the museum, a new on-site restaurant will serve “1940s-inspired food” and a canteen will feature recreations of wartime entertainment. 

The film, “Beyond All Boundaries,” has been called “groundbreaking,” Reuters reported in May. “This film uses a whole world of technologies, including an incredible sound system, multilayered projection, high definition, moving sets, 3-D features and more spectacular theatrical effects,” creative director Phil Hettema told Reuters. Hanks “has a very deep knowledge of World War II,” and played an “honorary role in the making of this film,” Hettema added.

An exclusive “Beyond All Boundaries” trailer is available on The National World War II Museum Web site.

Hanks On War and “Beyond All Boundaries”

“Every day, we lose 900 veterans of World War II. And with their deaths, we lose their stories, and the connection to a time that revolutionized America,” Janelle Nanos writes for National Geographic Traveler. That potential loss is part of what motivates Hanks to put a human face on the atrocities of war. Nanos interviewed Hanks about his film’s numerous special effects and rare World War II footage. The two discussed the parallels between today’s young soldiers and those who experienced WWII, and how Hanks hopes the museum’s new additions will help New Orleans draw more visitors.

The “Beyond All Boundaries” team “created some computer images of what it would have been like to be in the nose of a B-29 or something as horrible as the firebombing of Tokyo,” Hanks told Nanos.

Popular Mechanics reports on “3 Cool Things” about “Beyond All Boundaries,” which “goes to great lengths (some might say too far) to make you feel as if you’re in 1940s Europe.” Popular Mechanics points out that the film will be shown on a 115-foot by 28-foot screen able to withstand “multiple layers of projections.” But the special effects extend offscreen as well. For example, “hardware rises from a hidden 18-foot pit in the floor” and “the nose of a B-17 actually juts seamlessly from the screen.” The film’s “[h]istorical hyper-accuracy” and in-your-face special effects, including snow that falls on viewers’ shoulders, are also discussed.

Reference: World War II

World War II, fought in parts of Europe, the Middle East, East Asia and Africa between 1939-1945, was the most destructive war in history, claiming the lives of more than 60 million military personnel and civilians. FindingDulcinea’s educational guide to WWII includes Web sites offering an overview of World War II, resources on the Holocaust, World War II document archives and more.

Related Topic: New Orleans Travel

New Orleans is so much more than Mardi Gras, as this New Orleans Travel Tale explains. Nightlife and entertainment are unique and vibrant in the city, with a variety of options that include Cajun and zydeco music, free museums and cemetery tours, vampire fan clubs and distinctive local foods.

Beneath the surface of this colorful coastal city, many say ghosts and spirits dwell—perhaps more than in any other city in the United States. Of New Orleans’ plethora of scary places, six in particular stand out, including a hauntingly beautiful cemetery, an alleyway with a past and a bar beloved by Tennessee Williams.

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