Join TNS Host Michael Lerner with Walter Murch for conversation and discussion from the new book about Walter’s astrophysics work, Waves Passing in the Night: Walter Murch in the Land of the Astrophysicists.
Written by Pulitzer Prize nominee Lawrence Weschler, the book is a profile of Walter Murch—a film legend and amateur astrophysicist whose investigations could reshape our understanding of the universe. The book was based on work presented at The New School in March of 2015.
For film aficionados, Walter Murch is legendary: a three-time Academy Award winner, arguably the most admired sound and film editor in the world for his work on Apocalypse Now, The Godfather trilogy, The English Patient, and many others. Outside of the studio, his mind is wide-ranging; his passion, pursued for several decades, has been astrophysics, in particular the rehabilitation of Titius-Bode, a long-discredited 18th century theory regarding the patterns by which planets and moons array themselves in gravitational systems across the universe. Though as a consummate outsider he’s had a hard time attracting any sort of comprehensive hearing from professional astrophysicists, Murch has made advances that even some of them find intriguing, including a connection between Titius Bode and earlier notions—going back past Kepler and Pythagorus—of musical harmony in the heavens. Unfazed by rejection, ever probing, Murch perseveres in the highest traditions of outsider science.