James Kakalios

James Kakalios  with his Emmy and Dr. Manhattan lunchbox

Science Consultant

There has been a growing interest of late in Hollywood in communicating with scientists during the creation of science fiction and superhero films and television programs. Any moment when the audience is noticing that the science seems wrong, is a moment when they are not paying attention to the story. In fantasy, a little reality goes a long way.

When the creators of the 2009 Warner Bros. film Watchmen asked the National Academy of Sciences for a consultant to help translate the graphic novel to the big screen, James Kakalios was the perfect fit. His science and superhero expertise helped background on the physics behind such super powered characters as Watchmen's Dr. Manhattan.

"At the end of the day, I'm not looking for a movie to be 100 percent scientifically accurate. But if they can do something right, it's like catching a little inside joke… And who knows? Maybe the audience will learn a little something about science."

The University of Minnesota asked James Kakalios to make a short video on The Science of Watchmen for the University’s youtube page. The video to date has received over 1.6 million views since being posted on youtube.com in February 2009; has won an Upper Midwest Regional EMMY Award in 2009; and was nominated for a national WEBBY award in 2010. Read an article about his experience as a science consultant for the film Watchmen.

Most recently, James was one of the science advisors for the 2012 Marvel Entertainment movie, The Amazing Spider-Man. Among other things, James assisted with Spiderman’s characteristic webbing and wall crawling, basing this power off of Gecko lizards and their “version of static cling.” Read an article about his experience as a science consultant for the film The Amazing Spider-man.

If you would like to reach out to James Kakalios for his super Science Consultation services, visit the contact section of this site.