An exciting mix of IMAX thrills and locally produced films will be on view this weekend at the Exploreum. The Gulf Coast Exploreum Science Center will present “An IMAX Extravaganza Film Festival” featuring six popular IMAX films and a panel discussion with several Mobile-area filmmakers and films that feature Mobile as a setting.

The festival is set for Saturday, July 11, and Sunday July 12, and made possible by a grant from the Alabama Tourism Department.

A number of local filmmakers and producers will come together for a panel discussion on Saturday evening, July 11. from 6-9 p.m. to discuss the science of filmmaking and screen locally made films.

Among the panelists are Drew Hall and Horst Sarubin, who will talk about their locally made film “Aether.” Admission to the panel discussion is free for guests who purchase a weekend pass to the festival and $6 for others.
Your weekend pass gets you in to see all these widely varied but equally stunning films.

“Island of Lemurs: Madagascar”

“Island of Lemurs: Madagascar”

Island of Lemurs: Madagascar
Saturday, July 11, 11 a.m., 2 p.m.; Sunday, July 12, 1 p.m.
Academy Award winner Morgan Freeman narrates “Island of Lemurs: Madagascar,” the incredible true story of nature’s greatest explorers — lemurs. Captured with IMAX cameras, the film takes audiences on a spectacular journey to the remote and wondrous world of Madagascar.

Saturday, July 11, noon
Plunge into the realm of wild dolphins in this great adventure film. In “Dolphins,” viewers experience the warm, white sand banks of the Bahamas where the inquisitive dolphins live and play. Find out how we’re unraveling the mysteries of dolphin communication and meet a bottlenose dolphin named JoJo, who explores the colorful reefs with his human friend, Dean. 

Australia: Land Beyond Time
Saturday, July 11, 1 p.m.
This film is a breathtaking journey through the exotic, surreal and dramatic natural environment of Australia. Extraordinary panoramic vistas, taken from a two-engine plane with a camera attached to its nose, amazing geological facts, and marvelous animals, most of them unique to Australia, are what viewers see in this documentary of what is both the world’s smallest continent and its largest island. 

Saturday 3 p.m.; Sunday, 2 p.m.
An international team of climbers ascends Mount Everest in spring 1996. “Everest” depicts their lengthy preparations for the climb, their trek to the summit and their successful return to Base Camp. It also shows many of the challenges the group faced, including avalanches, lack of oxygen, treacherous ice walls and a deadly blizzard.

Space Junk
Saturday, 4 p.m.; Sunday, 3 p.m.
“Space Junk” is a scientific documentary that explores the previously disregarded problem of junk in space. “Space Junk” is the first movie to explore the exponentially expanding ring of debris that threatens the safety of our planets’ orbits and takes viewers soaring ― from the stunning depths of Meteor Crater to an unprecedented view of our increasingly crowded orbits, 22,000 miles above earth.

Hurricane on the Bayou
Saturday, 5 p.m.; Sunday, 4 p.m.
“Hurricane on the Bayou” carries audiences behind today’s headlines on a journey deep into the soul-stirring heart of Louisiana — before, during and after the unprecedented devastation of Hurricane Katrina. Unfolding against the poignant backdrop of the most costly natural disaster in America’s history, cameras follow a group of four musicians, both legendary and rising, as they explore the electrifying culture of New Orleans: speeding through the beautiful, alligator-filled bayous on airboats; recounting their heart-wrenching, personal stories of Katrina; and most of all, bringing the focus to the rapidly disappearing wetlands that are New Orleans’ first line of defense against deadly storms.

Exploreum education staff will also offer programs throughout the day on Saturday on the science of cinema, that include special effects, explosion science and storm surge, among other topics. Also on display will be a “Supermileage” car developed by engineering students at the University of South Alabama.

General admission for the weekend is $30 for adults and $20 for children; the cost for Exploreum members is $20 for adults and $10 for children.

The Gulf Coast Exploreum Science Center is located at 65 Government St. in Downtown Mobile.  For more information, call 251-208-6893.