First Man – The Annotated Screenplay Review

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Titan Books has gone ahead and made another out of this world book based on the hit film with Ryan Gosling called First Man. This annotated screenplay for the historically based movie is very insightful to their production, execution, and knowledge behind Neil Armstrong’s moon landing. Take a peek insight First Man – The Annotated Screenplay!

As a reader and personally I’ve always been interested in NASA and the space program, even watching and reading Astronaut Wives Club to get better insight to how the space program affected the lives of the Grissom, Shepard, Glenn, and Armstrong families.

About the Book

The annotated screenplay for First Man gives full information on the making of the movie and how they set up the official script for Gosling to use on set. Not to mention there are a ton of background pictures from the set, and historical ones of Neil Armstrong going through the tests, trials, and actions of going into space. Note that the movie First Man is based on the original book by James R. Hansen called First Man: The Life of Neil A. Armstrong, and has been adapted by Josh Singer who wrote the screenplay.

Example of Screenplay

If you’ve ever read a screenplay for movies or plays you’ll know they are very detailed. I’ve read Harry Potter and the Cursed Child along with the screenplay for Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and the most consistent aspect about all three including First Man is that they give you the imagery as to where the actor or actress would be on set, and the emotions they are supposed to express with their lines. First Man even more so has a full detailed screenplay because of the actions that they must convey through the screen. There are cues for how people are talking and what through such as comms, along with the physical actions that are being completed.

Movie Set – Ryan Gosling

I’ve really enjoyed reading through First Man – The Annotated Screenplay because I can take the time to actually read and understand whats completely going on. When watching a film you can be overtaken by the action in the scene and miss a cue from the actors, or the dialogue they are saying. First Man really needed to have a screenplay available to the audiences so we can grasp the drama and expertise that went into the film. After all, this biography film is based on one of the most historic moments in our history when Neil Armstrong landed on the lunar surface.

Neil Armstrong and David R. Scott in their spacecraft while awaiting the arrival of the recovery ship.

The Annotations

The annotations within this screenplay are provided by both James R. Hansen who wrote First Man: The Life of Neil A. Armstrong, and the official screenwriter who worked on the movie, Josh Singer. This means that they are not only insightful to what’s happening in the screenplay, but they have behind-the-scenes information on what they did to make this movie and screenplay happen.

My Take

I really enjoyed reading First Man – The Annotated Screenplay by Titan Books. It gave a huge insight to the highly anticipated movie, and made me honestly want to learn more about Armstrong and the other astronauts that took place within this time frame. NASA is a very interesting organization always pushing the boundaries of scientific exploration in space, it was all set off by this one incident in our history. Without Armstrong and the other astronauts sacrifice we would have never come this far.

You can get your own copy of First Man – The Annotated Screenplay directly from Titan Books, who will guide you to a local distributor!


  • Extremely Accurate to the Mission
  • Great Behind-the-Scenes Details
  • Extensively Detailed Sreenplay


Story/Plot - 10
Characters/Growth/Changes - 9
Quality of Writing - 9
Background Information - 10
Historic Accuracy - 10
Length of Screenplay/Details - 8
An avid gamer, journalist, literary reviewer, and lover of all things Marvel; wrapped in a colorful hair-do.
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