National Geographic Cinema Ventures IMAX Movie Project: Contributors

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Prof. Henning Stahlberg

Prof. Henning Stahlberg

He has been into microscopic imaging ever since he began his career as an academic. After his habilitation at the Biozentrum of the University Basel, he installed his first own laboratory at the University of California in Davis. There, he looked at the structure of membrane proteins by means of electron microscopy. Since 2009 he has been professor for Microscopy at the Biozentrum of the University of Basel, and Director of the Center for Cellular Imaging and NanoAnalytics (C-CINA), which is integrated into the Department for BioSystems Science and Engineering (D-BSSE) of the ETH in Basel. For the IMAX movie, Stahlberg organized the technical infrastructure. For example, the frontier Scanning Electron Microscope provided by the company FEI that was used to record the image sequences was installed in his laboratory.


Kenneth Norman Goldie

Kenneth Norman GoldieThe Swiss – New Zealander is a trained biologist. He has worked for more than thirty years in the field of electron microscopy and applied it to various fields such as geology, cell and structural biology and materials science. Currently working as a Research Associate and Facility Manager at The Center for Cellular Imaging and NanoAnalytics (C-CINA), Biozentrum, at the University of Basel. For the movie project, he acquired still and multiple image sequences using the Dualbeam Scanning Electron Microscope. “It was very rewarding to work with a highly skilled and talented team of experts making these film sequences and being constantly surprised and amazed at how beautiful and unexplored the microscopic world remains.”


Prof. Thomas Vetter

Prof. Thomas VetterHe was a postdoctoral researcher at the Center for Biological and Computational Learning at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. There, he started his research on computer vision. Since 2002, he has been a professor of applied computer science at the University of Basel, Switzerland. His current research is in image understanding, graphics, and automated model building. He was asked to assemble his computer science experts when the team around Henning Stahlberg realized that Martin Oeggerli would never be able to hand-colorize the over 10 000 frames that the movie would be composed of. Its primary aim was to develop an automated colorization software. For this task, Vetter committed his very talented graduate student Jasenko Zivanov.



Jasenko Zivanov

He is a PhD researcher at the computer vision group of Prof. Thomas Vetter at the University of Basel. He has always had a deep personal connection to both mathematics and the visual arts throughout his life. The development of the colorization software offered a rare opportunity to connect those two interests. It was one of the toughest challenges of his career so far: “Nothing of this nature had ever been done before and we only had seven months time to develop it and to perfect it to a degree at which the results would be accepted by the Hollywood studio,” he says.


Martin Oeggerli

Martin OeggerliHe is the “Micronaut”, someone who descends down to the unknown world of the small by means of a powerful electron microscope. He is a trained biologist who turned his passion for electron microscope imaging into a profession. Since 2008 he has been a freelance microphotographer and his images have been published several times in National Geographic. The production of a high-resolution movie sequence of a cat flea for the IMAX movie is yet another milestone in his career. “Making movies is bloody hard work! Most of the time you are under immense time pressure, e.g. to catch up after the producer changed the priority list or because you had to solve a technical problem that appeared out of the blue,” he says.