Nat Geo's 'APOLLO: Missions to the Moon' Explores the 'Age of Wonder' From a World-Wide Perspective [EXCLUSIVE CLIP]

"That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind." That was the quote heard all around the world following Neil Armstrong's iconic first steps on the moon on July 20, 1969. In just two weeks, the world will celebrate the 50th anniversary celebration of the landmark Apollo 11 mission.

Before viewers are treated to dozens of films and photos remembering everything Apollo 11 crew members Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins achieved with mankind's first trip to the moon, National Geographic will show the world exactly how they got there. The network will debut a new documentary, APOLLO: Missions to the Moon, nearly two weeks before the anniversary on Sunday. The film, produced by award-winning filmmaker Tom Jennings, covers the space program long before the Apollo 11 crew stepped foot on Earth's natural satellite.

Nat Geo's 'APOLLO: Missions to the Moon' Explores the 'Age of Wonder'
Astronaut Edwin Aldrin, Jr. deploys a scientific experiment on the lunar surface a few yeads away from the lunar module. This photo and several others will be featured in National Geographic's new documentary, "APOLLO: Missions to the Moon," premiering on the network ahead of the Apollo 11 50th anniversary on July 7, 2019. NASA

"Instead of just focusing on 11, we focus on all the Apollo missions, because 11 would not have happened without what came before it. So we go from Sputnik to the space shuttle," Jennings told Newsweek. "For people that don't know a lot about the Apollo missions other than the moon landing, it's a really terrific primer and it explains everything. You really feel like you're living through it. And for people that are old enough to remember, or barely remember, it certainly functions as a time machine. It takes them back."

The documentary provides a global perspective of everything it took to get the men to space in the first place. "Don't forget when [President John F. Kennedy] made the promise to go to the moon, they didn't have a space ship. They had nothing, and the Russians were already putting men into orbit. They had to make it all up from scratch. Nothing existed," he explained.

APOLLO: Missions to the Moon sheds insight on the massive scale of the project, which employed approximately 400,000 people and subcontracted 20,000 businesses just to launch the United States' official space program and get Project Apollo—as it was referred to during that time—off the ground.

"The scope of this thing was much bigger than we thought," Jennings added.

While there will be plenty of anniversary documentaries rolling out in the upcoming weeks with never-before-seen footage and photos, Jennings' project gives viewers new perspectives on the historic mission. Eschewing modern-day retrospectives, Missions to the Moon relives the voyage through contemporary television coverage and home interviews, allowing viewers to hear from the wives and family members of the mission participants.

Then there's the enhanced audio footage experience. "In the past, you'd only hear the main guy Capcom talking to the astronaut, but all those other people in the room—you couldn't hear what they were saying. It was like watching a silent movie," Jennings, who was just a young boy living in Cleveland, Ohio when the mission took place, said.

Nat Geo's documentary solves that.

After sourcing through thousands of hours of audio recordings and footage, Jennings' and company were able to—for the first time ever—sync the audio of the various 30 different Mission Control operators to the silent footage people across the globe watched 50 years ago. Now we'll get to hear all the voices during the mission (as seen in the exclusive clip above). Now we're in the room anticipating that awe-inspiring moment when the Apollo 11 crew landed on the moon.

Nat Geo's 'APOLLO: Missions to the Moon' Explores the 'Age of Wonder'
A group of technicians watch an instrument panel. This photo and several other never-before-seen images will appear on National Geographic's documentary, "APOLLO: Missions to the Moon," in celebration of Apollo 11's 50th anniversary. The film airs on July 7, 2019. Otis Imboden/National Geographic Creative

The images, footage and audio bring a rich new depth to this dramatic historical moment, by highlighting just how ingenuitive and dangerous the mission actually was, all the while painting an image of society's innate desire to push humanity forward at that time.

Mike Massimino, the first astronaut to ever tweet from space, who has seen the film, said the documentary was more than just a celebration of historical success, but a depiction of "what we can achieve as a country."

"It's a reminder of who we can be and who we are. As a country and as a world, what we were able to do back then was amazing," Massimino told Newsweek. "I hope younger people who were too young, or not alive yet, can watch this and appreciate it. This was something that really happened, and even if you're uninterested in space, it can inspire people to think about what we can do as a country and what we should be about."

Considering the turmoil sweeping the nation during that time period with the assassinations of political and social leaders and the Vietnam War, Jennings suggested the film could serve as a glimpse into the uncanny way people were still able to find wonder in the midst of toxicity.

"We open the film with Walk Disney talking about Tomorrowland. We did that on purpose because we wanted to show this was an age of wonder, we could still be amazed by what was possible," he said. "Now with all the technology that we have, especially instantaneous communication anywhere in the world at any time—sometimes we think as a society we think we've got it all figured out. And back then, they didn't have it all figured out but they were gonna try."

He added: "Maybe it's being a bit of a sentimentalist but I kinda miss that feeling: We're gonna try, even though we have no idea what we're getting ourselves into."

APOLLO: Missions to the Moon premieres on National Geographic Sunday at 9 p.m. ET.

Nat Geo's 'APOLLO: Missions to the Moon' Explores the 'Age of Wonder' From a World-Wide Perspective [EXCLUSIVE CLIP] | Culture
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