Matt Damon ‘sciences the sh*t’ out of Mars in incredible trailer for The Martian

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The last time we (Kaiser) reported on the upcoming Ridley Scott movie, The Martian, we heard that Matt Damon got a whopping $25 million for his role while Jessica Chastain pulled in a comparatively measly $7 million. Several of you who have read the book by Andy Weir note that Damon’s role was more central than Chastain’s. Now that we’ve had a chance to see the trailer, below, it’s clear that’s the case. (Not that it justifies the pay disparity, it just explains it somewhat.)

Take a look at the trailer, which was just released, (if you’re able to) and we’ll talk about it in a moment.

That was incredible, right? It was one of the most powerful trailers I’ve seen and I know I’ll see it when it comes out in November. Damon MacGyvers his way through a presumed four years of survival in a harsh environment while the team on earth goes rogue to save him. It’s rare that you get to see such a full plot outline and yet still want to have the details filled in. I love that there are so many excellent supporting actors in this, particularly Chiwetel Ejiofor, Chastain and Kristen Wiig.

Many people are pointing out that this film bears at least a superficial resemblance to Interstellar, particularly because Damon’s astronaut character in that film, Dr. Mann, similarly gets stranded. (Note that the Netflix DVD for Interstellar is sitting right next to my XBox and I haven’t seen it yet. I hate when this happens.) Here’s a tweet from book author Andy Weir acknowledging this coincidence.

Critics are saying that this film looks much better than Interstellar, though, particularly because the science shown is actually realistic. (Unlike Interstellar or Gravity.) Business Insider points out that author Weir researched the book extensively. He said “To a nerd like me, working out all the math and physics for Mark’s problems and solutions was fun. The more I worked on it, the more I realized I had accidentally spent my life researching for this story.”

What’s more is that NASA experts have consulted on the film for authenticity and “production has worked very closely with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab“. NASA even gave permission for their actual logo to be used in the film.

Here’s a tweet from NASA tacitly acknowledging that the book is realistic.

Oh and there’s a new promotional video featuring interviews with the “astronauts” on board before the disaster. I really enjoyed this, particularly the faux tweets from fans in the background. This is clever. At one point there’s a German tweet about Damon and Kate Mara’s characters acting like brother and sister. Why do we have to wait until November for this?! I want to see it now.

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photos are screenshots from the trailer

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42 Responses to “Matt Damon ‘sciences the sh*t’ out of Mars in incredible trailer for The Martian”

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  1. runCMC says:

    I looooooved the book and am SO EXCITED for this movie!!!

    • Krista says:

      I’m convinced. I’ll pick up this book next.

      • Lemon says:

        I read the book and thought it would work better as a film! If you’re really into looooong paragraphs about scientific detail, yes, read the book. Sometimes it was,like reading a textbook. But if not, I’d wait for the movie.

  2. Catelina says:

    Honestly, I tried to read the book and was bored. But I like the cast here.
    The thing about this trailer though is that I feel like I just saw the whole plot play out. These first trailers should really be kept under a minute and a half.

    • Chris says:

      I had a hard time with the book in the beginning. At first it was just Mark “sciencing the sh*t out of mars” and it was so technical and dry at times. However I found the book picked up once they started focusing on the other characters. I found it odd that they didn’t really give much information about Mark’s life on earth. Has anyone else read the book?

  3. Tracy says:

    I’d watch Matt Damon reading soup cans.

  4. Cran says:

    The book is excellent. There is lots of science and the author does a good job presenting what could have been really dry (no pun intended). Matt Damon’s character out Macgyvers Macgyver.

    I’ve had the opportunity to meet Major Charles Bolden, Jr. The Administrator for NASA who is phenomenal. Astronauts are awesome. They deserve every accolade they receive.

    I’m looking forward to seeing this film.

  5. paola says:

    Did Jessica Chastain and Matt Damon land on Mars straight from Interstellar??

  6. Tiny Martian says:

    The pay disparity is definitely justified here. As a staunch feminist, I’m fully in favor of equal pay for equal work. But let’s not go overboard and assume that all acting roles in the same movie are equal! More demanding roles should equal better pay, and more experienced actors who are bigger box office draws should get paid more as well, imo.

  7. Jegede says:

    I’m rooting for Matt Damon, he badly needs a hit.

    • Emma - the JP Lover says:

      @Jegede, who wrote: “I’m rooting for Matt Damon, he badly needs a hit.”

      Matt had a hit with “Elysium” in 2013. The film made $93 million Domestically and $193 million Overseas for a $286.1 million total gross.

      • Nik says:


        Elysium had a budget of $115 million. Only grossing $286 m. isnt enough to be considered a hit. It needed to make double just to break even. Not also counting what the studio spent on promo.

        That’s why it’s crazy Damon is getting $25m when he hasn’t had a hit in a while.

      • Emma - the JP Lover says:

        @Nik, who wrote: “Elysium had a budget of $115 million. Only grossing $286 m. isnt enough to be considered a hit. It needed to make double just to break even. Not also counting what the studio spent on promo.”

        “Elysium” grossed $286 million at the box office and doubled the Production Budget at $230 million. The film also grossed $34 million in DVD sales, which, added to the $286 million total, brought the film’s grand total up to $320 million. Here’s an excerpt from an article the December 14, 2014 online edition of “The Hollywood Reporter” titled “Sony Hack Reveals Top-Secret Profitability of 2013 Movies” by Tatiana Siegel:

        “According to the leaked document, several 2013 movies will end up in profit, including This Is the End ($50 million in profits), Grown Ups 2 ($48 million), Captain Phillips ($39 million), American Hustle ($27 million), One Direction: This Is Us ($18 million), Elysium ($18 million) and Monuments Men ($10 million). Several other movies will not make a profit, according to the document (Monuments Men was scheduled to be released in 2013 but was pushed to 2014). ”

        “Elysium” made $18 million in profit for Sony ‘after’ making back the film’s production and marketing cost. I’m sure Sony agrees with me that the film was a hit. 🙂

        Here is the link to the article:

  8. Mia4S says:

    I really don’t care if the science is all correct. I like it when the science has a solid basis but if the movie is not enjoyable who cares? I can watch the discovery channel.

    It will be interesting to see how this does. Gravity and Interstellar were both big hits at about $700 million worldwide. Does this benefit or suffer from comparisons? Damn do Ridley Scott and Damon need a hit!

  9. Emma says:

    The book was so good! It looks like it will be a pretty close adaptation (though perhaps more action back on Earth than in the book?). I”m very excited to see what was changed or not. It will be neat to see it onscreen because some of the science/space stuff I had trouble picturing clearly. SO EXCITED!

  10. koko says:

    I’m going back and forth on whether to read the book first. Suggestions????

    • Cran says:

      My vote is read the book. I am totally biased though. I am a HUGE reader. I kept track once out of curiosity and I tallied 291 so please keep that in mind😊

      • s says:

        That’s about two grad school semesters worth of reading. I know how it sounds, but it’s also true.

  11. Elfie says:

    Damons worth every penny he’s paid and it’s not fair to compare with Chastain, they are not equals in terms of how much of an audience they can attract. I’m surprised she’s getting that much at all as I don’t know anyone who would go to see her.

    The movie looks good.

  12. Patricia says:

    Yeah that was great to see a whole movie in three minutes. Now I don’t have to go pay at the theater.,

  13. Lilacflowers says:

    Not only did Damon play a stranded astronaut in Interstellar but Jessica Chastein had the job of figuring out how to rescue stranded astronauts. But I will see this opening night.

    Also, this will be the third year in a row in which films involving stranded astronauts vie for Oscar nominations. Now, what is this years entry for people stranded on a boat? That has been another competitive category recently

  14. Jackson says:

    I *hated* Interstellar – too damn hokey and contrived. Gravity was just….meh. THIS movie, though, looks fabulous. Wish it was a big summer movie coming out now.

  15. RobN says:

    I’m really looking forward to this, but I do hate a movie where everything is dark all the time and I spend two hours squinting to make out details. I’d like to assume that in real life, NASA understands the need for decent lighting.

  16. Ruyana says:

    I loved the book. It’s not my usual genre, but I couldn’t put it down. I didn’t see Intersteller at all, and I watched Gravity once. Other than the fact that Sandra Bullock pretty much held a whole movie as the sole character, which I thought was cool, was the only memorable thing about it for me.

  17. Catelina says:

    For Ridley Scott’s sake, I hope this is good

    • Tiffany says:

      I am with you. Ridley Scott has been awful lately. Whoever cut the trailer for his films deserve an award.

  18. smcollins says:

    This looks like it’s going to be amazing! But I’d also watch Matt Damon read a phone book, so…. 😉

  19. AG-UK says:

    CAnnot wait looks good and it has Childish Gambino in it. 🙂

  20. Ravensdaughter says:

    Help me-who is the woman, pictured above, who is a dead ringer for Jennifer Aniston?

    • Emma - the JP Lover says:

      It would help if you actually pointed out which picture you’re referring to? You know … second one down, etc.?

    • Yrsa says:

      I think you mean Kristen Wiig (between Matt Damon in his spacehelmet and Jessica Chastain strapped in the chair)

    • Miss M says:

      Are you talking about Kristen Wiig?

    • Tiffany :) says:

      I thought it was Kristen, but I also thought it might have been Vera Farmiga. Thanks for clarifying!

  21. QQ says:

    This Looks amazing …. and Chock full of people I actually love to see on screen, and Not a Marvel Superhero thing or a remake of something from the 80s, or a whitewash of something , JOY!

  22. RTMS says:

    Ok the timeline /science doesn’t make sense here.If it takes 4 yrs to get to Mars, doesn’t that mean the crew took 4 yrs to escape to earth? Which means another 4 years to get back to Mars and again go back home? A total of 12 yrs will have or should pass bye.

  23. A~ says:

    This is going to be sooooo much better than the book. The book was a fun read, but it lacked a lot in actual physical detail. It was mostly logistical description.

  24. MissTrial says:

    It looks great! ( Aside: I hated Gravity & did not see Interstellar.)
    I LOVE Matt Damon so I might be biased. Chiwetel Ejiofor too? I am in!

    I guess my only question is: does Sean Bean die in this movie, too?

  25. Cran says:

    @s I always wondered how grad students did not say screw this when they received their reading lists. I earned extra money working in a college bookstore at the beginning of each term. The looks when the grad students saw me return to the counter with pile after pile of books…I had no desire to witness the expression when they had to pay.