12. The Wow! Signal
If you think working for an organization called SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) sounds like the coolest job in the world, you’re wrong. Just ask SETI employee Jerry R. Ehman, who spent most of his days listening to radio signals from the Big Ear telescope that was pointed into deep space.
He recorded numbers, listened into the void, and heard nothing. That is until August 15, 1977 when a 72 second signal bounced back to him. It was loud, intense, and all signs pointed to an extraterrestrial origin. He wrote down his findings, circled them, and scribbled Wow! next to them.
The sound was never explained or heard again, but scientists agreed that if the signal did come from aliens, it would have to have been from an advanced civilization with technology infinitely more powerful than what we have on Earth.
How Would The Movie Look?
Space is a horrifying wasteland that’s been the setting for tons of original films, but it’s not the best place for a movie based on the infamous Wow! Signal. This film would work best as a biopic along the lines of The Imitation Game; a movie that focuses on an unbelievable story and filters it through a deeply fascinating man.
Somewhere in the buzz of an unidentifiable (and possibly alien) signal is the story of a man, Jerry R. Ehman, who heard something no one else has ever heard and wrote that now-famous "Wow!" next to his findings.
This film would dive into a fascinating mystery surrounding the sound head first, while staying grounded in reality, fact, and a public servant that listened to nothing for years on end until finally hearing something back.