The upcoming biographical movie about Neil Armstrong, "The First Man," has sparked massive outrage in the United States, as the motion picture about the first man on the Moon completely omits the moment on July 21, 1969, when the astronaut stuck the American flag into the Lunar surface.
The notorious US flag on the Lunar surface is arguably one of the most recognizable — and, by conspiracy theorists, the most disputed — photographs in human history. Despite that, Damien Chazelle, the director, made the decision to cut the scene entirely.
"I think this was widely regarded in the end as a human achievement, and that's how we chose to view it," Gosling said, according to The Telegraph. "I don't think that Neil viewed himself as an American hero. From my interviews with his family and people that knew him, it was quite the opposite. And we wanted the film to reflect Neil."
"Also I think Neil was extremely humble, as were many of these astronauts, and time and time again he deferred the focus from himself to the 400,000 people who made the mission possible," Gosling added.
However, Gosling's comments apparently failed to convince the public, as the #boycottfirstman hashtag got trending on Twitter Friday.
US Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) was one of the most prominent critics of the flag's omission.
"This is total lunacy. And a disservice at a time when our people need reminders of what we can achieve when we work together. The American people paid for that mission, on rockets built by Americans, with American technology & carrying American astronauts. It wasn't a UN mission," he wrote on Twitter.
This is total lunacy. And a disservice at a time when our people need reminders of what we can achieve when we work together. The American people paid for that mission,on rockets built by Americans,with American technology & carrying American astronauts. It wasn’t a UN mission. https://t.co/eGwBq7hj8C— Marco Rubio (@marcorubio) 31 августа 2018 г.
Some viewers expressed their frustration over how the movie would deprive them of the warm feeling brought on by the US reaching the moon before the Soviet Union in the Space Race, in which the USSR had scored early victories by launching the first artificial satellite and putting the first astronaut into space.
I was going to go watch this but not now I remember the and what it felt like to accomplish this over Russia. This was an American success, put the flag back in #boycottfirstman— Jeanne Thompson (@RphotosJeanne) 30 августа 2018 г.
Interestingly, at the time of the mission, NASA actually mulled planting the flag of the United Nations on the Moon, The Hill reports. However, as we know, the American flag was chosen eventually, sparking its share of criticism, as some viewed the move as "territorial."
The movie is set to hit US theaters on October 12.