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Ryan Gosling defends leaving American flag out of moon landing biopic

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An upcoming movie depicting Neil Armstrong walking on the moon will not include the astronaut planting the American flag there.

Star Ryan Gosling, who plays Armstrong in the movie “First Man,” told The Telegraph this week that it’s because the first person to walk on the moon didn’t see himself “as an American hero.”

“I think this was widely regarded in the end as a human achievement [and] that’s how we chose to view it,” Gosling said. “I don’t think that Neil viewed himself as an American hero. From my interviews with his family and people that knew him, it was quite the opposite. And we wanted the film to reflect Neil.”

{mosads}Gosling added that he might be biased against the American flag, as well.

“I’m Canadian, so might have cognitive bias,” he joked.

NASA’s Apollo 11 mission was the first manned moon landing, in 1969. The flag-planting was controversial at the time, and NASA made it clear it was strictly symbolic. The United Nations Treaty on Outer Space banned any territorial claim on the moon by a single nation.

“In the end it was decided by Congress that this was a United States project,” Armstrong once said of planting the flag, according to The Telegraph. “We were not going to make any territorial claim, but we were to let people know that we were here and put up a U.S. flag.”

The movie hits theaters on Oct. 12.

Tags Apollo 11 Film Flag of the United States

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