5 Actors who played Neil Armstrong on screen


News broke a few hours back that Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon, had passed away aged 82 .

Hollywood will no doubt pay respect, and tributes will flow amongst the A-listers on the Twittersphere, but truth is, Hollywood’s been paying respect to the space explorer for years.

As we remember Neil Armstrong on this sad day, here’s a look at 5 who have played Armstrong on screen.

Tony Goldwyn
In : From Earth to the Moon (1998)
The actor and filmmaker, likely best known for his role as the backstabbing scoundrel in “Ghost” (1990), played Neil Armstrong in the epic mini-series “From Earth to the Moon”.

The series, produced by Tom Hanks and Ron Howard, tackled the subject of space exploration, fixing heavily on Armstrong’s big moment.



Don Jeanes
In : Transformers : Dark of the Moon (2011)
The trailer’s big ‘money’ moment, and the start of the film itself, featured an appearance by a well-known ‘Neal’ discovering something rather unexpected on the surface of the Moon. Obviously, none of what happened in this film really happened to the late Armstrong… or did it!?

(Read our interview with Jeanes here)



Jeffrey Nordling
In : Apollo 11 (1996)
Jeffrey Nordling, a familiar face on the box from his roles on such series as “24” and “Once and Again”, played Armstrong in the Family Channel production which fixed on America’s race to space against the Russians.

Another “24” alum Xander Berkeley played Buzz Aldrin in the movie.



Mark Wheeler
In : Apollo 13 (1995)
Ron Howard’s “Apollo 13” fixed on the mission post-Armstrong, but director Ron Howard naturally made room for an Armstrong appearance in the film.

Mark Wheeler, an actor best known for his role on the ’70s TV series “Mobile One”, played the part.



Daniel Lapaine
In : Moonshoot (2009)
A History Channel production that takes place in the lead-up to the July, 1969 launch, “Moonshot” had Australian actor Daniel Lapaine, known for his role as David Van Arkle in “Muriel’s Wedding”, playing Armstrong.





But it’s Neil Armstrong himself who gave the best performance in that inimitable bit of landmark footage from July of 1969…