Matt Damon in The Martian.

Having already picked up two Golden Globes and seven Academy Award nominations, it’s pretty evident that The Martian is an incredible movie. Starring Matt Damon as a stranded astronaut who is presumed dead while on Mars and needs to find a way to signal to Earth that he is alive, the film delivers explosive special effects and a gripping storyline that will keep you at the edge of your seat.

Inspired by the work that Nasa does and based on Andy Weir’s book of the same name, The Martian has a wonderful backstory that is just as interesting as the movie itself. With The Martian heading to BoxOffice on Monday 8 February (watch the trailer here), it is only fitting that we share fun facts and interesting trivia related to this award-winning movie before you dive in for a scientific film experience.

1. Scenes for Mars were shot on location in Jordan because the red desert mimics the red-hued planet. The 2000 movie Red Planet was shot at the same location.

2. Olympus Mons is one of the largest volcanoes in the solar system and you can see it in one of the 3-D panoramic shots of Mars in The Martian, which is an example of the incredible Nasa archives referenced quite often in the film. 

3. For such a detailed and intensively driven film, it took only 72 days to shoot.


4. Four days prior to the US release of The Martian, Nasa released confirmation of possible evidence of water on Mars. Still an on-going investigation, this sits quite close to the themes in the movie.

5. The mission in the movie emulates actual missions that Nasa is currently working on with a team of astronauts who will go to Mars to investigate the possibility of living and surviving on the red planet.

6. When filming, only 90% of the script was used and the remaining 10% allowed for adjustments to make sure that everything was scientifically accurate.

7. The Chinese buildings and Nasa headquarters depicted in the film are actually two culturally popular buildings in Budapest – another location used quite heavily for shooting.

8. There are slight differences between the book and movie. For instances, the movie shows the astronauts starting on Sol 18 but the book sees them start during Sol 6. Sol is the Latin word for "sun".

9. After Andy Weir wrote The Martian, he put it on his blog for people to read for free. We guess he didn’t expect the incredible outcome that followed.

We could continue to share fascinating facts but we’re sure that you can see how much detail and hard work went into this movie. Rent The Martian on BoxOffice from Monday 8 February to see why everyone has been talking about it.