January 18, 2019—BIG & Digital and Afterglow Studios are pleased to
announce Touch the Stars, the
follow-up to the highly acclaimed 2015 giant screen film Space Next will release February 2, 2019, at Evergreen Aviation
& Space Museum.

Produced by Afterglow Studios
and distributed to giant screen
and fulldome theaters
by BIG & Digital,
Touch the Stars is
the second in a planned
trilogy showcasing humanity’s exploration of space. Rendered
in stunning 8K resolution, the film chronicles the valiant
exploration of the solar system
by unmanned robotic
spacecraft with well-known names like Mariner, Voyager, and Galileo.

According to the film’s director, Luke Ployhar: “While
Space Next was mostly
about the future of human
exploration of space, Touch the Stars looks
at the history of robotic space exploration, how these spacecraft helped us understand the solar system
in which we live,
and how they
prepared us for
the next generation of explorers, those
that will transform us from a one planet species to an interplanetary species.”

Lockheed Martin Space engineers joined Afterglow as
Technical Producers regarding NASA’s Orion spacecraft, Lunar Gateway, and the company’s Mars Base Camp
concept – providing an
exciting climax to the film as humanity returns to the Moon and moves on to
Mars. “I was very excited working with Lockheed Martin,” says Ployhar, “to
learn that they’re not only involved in developing crewed systems to visit
other worlds, but they had a hand in each of the historic robotic spacecraft
featured in the film.”

“It’s exciting to see Touch
the Stars
conclude with our Mars Base Camp vision as it’s a culmination of
decades of exploring our solar system with robotic vehicles and soon, human
deep space exploration, which together will accelerate and revolutionize
scientific discovery,” said Lisa Callahan, vice president and general manager
for Commercial Civil Space at Lockheed Martin. “Around the world, public
excitement in space exploration continues to rise and this film tells a
beautiful story about these amazing spacecraft and spectacular missions. We’re
delighted to have worked with Afterglow Studios on this wonderful film.”

Over a three-year period, Ployhar and his team at Afterglow
Studios set out to honor
each of the missions profiled in the film with extensive animation based
on original spacecraft photography. The final results jump in vivid detail off
the giant screen. To accomplish this, the filmmakers filled a 32-terabyte
server and over 60 Intel processors were utilized nonstop for over a year just
to produce the film’s renderings.

Robotic space exploration has entered another
golden age, with missions to destinations
as close as Mars and as far away as Pluto regularly
making the evening
news. Touch the Stars is a
timely film certain to enthrall and engage audiences of all ages. It’s not just

about where we’ve been, but where we are now and where we’re headed.
For more information, visit
the Touch the Stars website at TouchtheStarsMovie.com.



Social Media

Facebook – www.facebook.com/touchthestars

Twitter –


About Afterglow Studios

Afterglow Studios, founded by Luke Ployhar in 2007, is an
award-winning animation and postproduction studio based in Minneapolis, MN,
providing cutting-edge Visual Effects, Animation, Design and Film Production.
After working on several Giant Screen films providing Effects and Post
solutions, Afterglow Studios
produced the GSCA award-winning
film, Space Next with a release in
2015 and Touch the Stars (February
2019), in partnership with Lockheed Martin. Luke Ployhar, a 20-year veteran of
Visual Effects and Computer Graphics, has VFX credits including Minority Report, A.I., and Planet of the

About Lockheed Martin

Headquartered in Bethesda, Maryland, Lockheed Martin is a
global security and aerospace company that employs approximately 100,000 people
worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development,
manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems,
products and services.

About BIG & Digital,

BIG & Digital
specializes in distribution of 4K Films
for Flat Screens
and 4K and 8K Shows for Fulldome (FD) Theaters and Planetariums. BIG & Digital
was founded in 2009
by Tina Ratterman, a veteran in the giant screen (GS) industry with over 20
years of successful marketing and distribution experience. New releases include
In Saturn’s Rings (GS/FD), Touch the Stars GS/FD), Ningaloo: Australia’s Other Great Reef (FD), Expedition
(GS) and Legends of the
Northern Sky
(FD). The company has over 12 Films/
Shows currently in distribution, including Space
, 2015 Best Visual Effects Winner – Giant Screen Cinema Association.
More information can be found at www.biganddigital.com.