National Geographic Studios for National Geographic Channel
Available for Free screenings ONLY
The tornado that struck El Reno, Oklahoma, on May 31, 2013, defined superlatives. It was the largest, one of the fastest, and—for storm chasers—the most lethal twister ever recorded on Earth. Among those it claimed was Tim Samaras, revered as one of the most experienced and cautious scientists studying tornadoes. But this storm was unlike any he had witnessed before. In this National Geographic Special, we unravel the tornado and tell its story.
Filmmaker Q & A
What inspired this story?
We’ve had a relationship with Tim Samaras that goes back years, and his death was profoundly felt across National Geographic. So finding out what really happened that day was all the inspiration we needed.
Describe some of the challenges faced while making this film?
There is a mountain of footage, and it all connects in the timeline of events, but figuring out exactly where in that timeline was most challenging. We had to look for landmarks, characteristics of the twister itself, road signs, etc. Was quite a feat, considering the amount of material.
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