The move comes as the documentary about the 1969 NASA mission to put the first men on the moon is gearing up for a heated awards season. “Apollo 11” is seen as one of the major contenders for the best documentary prize at this year’s Academy Awards, but it faces competition from the likes of “The Cave,” a gripping look at the war in Syria, and “American Factory,” the story of the culture clashes that ensue when a Chinese company sets up operations in Middle America.
Neon, the indie studio that partnered with CNN Films on “Apollo 11,” will re-release the movie on Dec. 6. It originally opened in Imax on March 1 and went on to gross $16.3 million globally, to become the top-earning non-fiction film of the year. Neon has another documentary in the awards hunt in “The Biggest Little Farm,” the story of an urban company that decides to start a farm outside of Los Angeles.
“Apollo 11” has already earned Gotham Awards, Spirit Awards, Cinema Eye and IDA nominations, and won three Critics’ Choice Documentary Awards. The movie utilized previously unreleased 65mm footage and audio recordings to look at the courage and daring of astronauts Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins.