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Identity & Community

Carnegie Science Center Brings Battle Of Normandy To Its Omnimax Theater

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D-Day: Normandy 1944
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via Rossilynne Culgan

On June 6, 1944, around 156,000 American, British and Canadian troops stormed the shores of Normandy in the largest Allied operation of World War II, according to the D-Day Museum & Overlord Embroidery.

Audiences in Pittsburgh can experience that battle in Carnegie Science Center’s Rangos Omnimax Theater starting May 15.

Rossilynne Culgan, the marketing communications manager, said D-Day: Normandy 1944 presents a different perspective than your typical history book.

“We all learn about WWII during our social studies lessons in school, but to actually see these things animated with maps – the maps really were incredible throughout the film – (that) explain exactly how the operation took place ... it’s really incredible to see it on a giant screen,” Culgan said.

The director of the movie, Pascal Vuong, used several filming techniques, including computer-generated imagery and archival photos.

“It does use some aerial footage, which is really incredible to see Normandy’s historical locations animated in the film, and then the reenactments kind of bring to life the experiences that people had in the battle,” Culgan said.

The film explains why Normandy became such an essential battle for the Allies.  It breaks up the operation into five chapters.

Culgan said the film labels the Liberty Ship, the Jeep and the bulldozer among the “keys to victory.”

She said watching it in the Omnimax enables the audience to experience it in a different way.

“Because it’s a dome theater, it really envelops you in the movie," Culgan said. "It makes you feel like you’re in the center of the action.”

She said people should come watch the film to learn about the sacrifices that have been made in the name of freedom.

“The director has said the movie is a representation of why we in the Western world should be grateful to those who gave everything, including their lives, for our liberty,” Culgan said. “And I think that’s the most important reason that people should learn about this history.”

According to the D-Day Museum, more than 4,400 Allied forces were killed during the invasion of Normandy.