A surprise guest joined the cast and creators of HBO's Westworld at the end of the show's SXSW panel on Saturday. Elon Musk, founder of SpaceX, friend of the creators of the show Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy, appeared as a way to end the panel with a note of "optimism", in the words of Nolan, and at the same time show the audience an inspiring breakthrough that Nolan created by promoting the February launch of the SpaceX Heavy Falcon rocket.
"One of the things that I really used to, when I was a kid, spending an unhealthy amount of time thinking about was space and space flights," Nolan said, noting that he had grown up watching Super 8 sequences from Saturn's rocket launch , but that the fervor and emotion that once fostered space exploration has vanished. "And then I was having a drink last year with a friend, and we were talking about how you inspire people? How do you get people talking again? How can you conduct the conversation?
His solution, Nolan said, was a red sports car and a David Bowie song, and the friend was none other than Musk.
Why Falcon Heavy and Starman? Life is not just about solving one sad problem after another. It is necessary that there are things that inspire you, that make you feel happy to wake up in the morning and be part of humanity. That's why we did it We did it for you https://t.co/5STO7q4wro- Elon Musk (@elonmusk) March 11, 2018
Established for David Bowie's "Starman," the video tracks the preparation, successes and failures of Falcon Heavy's release last month. The event was covered extensively at that time, but the trailer that Nolan cut out includes new images that the audience is seeing for the first time. While the two rocket side thrusters landed successfully after launch, the center reinforcement did not fare so well, and the trailer offers the first look at the destruction of that rocket. It also includes numerous new shots of launch preparation, including the infamous Musk red Tesla Roadster.
"I had the privilege of being down with Elon at the launch control for the launch of Falcon Heavy, and there was an incredible spirit there that day," Nolan told the audience. "He felt extraordinary, thinking of all the people who had helped to put this together, and in his spirit, and something that I have not felt in a terribly long time, we tried to distill that essence."
"The only way I know how to express it is that we cut a trailer," he said. "It's not a trailer for a movie, it's not a trailer for a TV show, what we hope is that this is the trailer for a part of the next chapter in human history."