The film pays tribute to the celebrated scientist, humanitarian, audacious traveller and a “Citizen of the World”.
You are invited to follow a journey of a lifetime to the Maclay Coast in Papua New Guinea, led by the scientist’s great-great-grandnephew and full namesake from Russia. 
This film trailer will reveal some of the highlights from THE MAN FROM THE MOON.

The film will have its premiere at 7:30 PM 15 November 2018 as part of the St Petersburg International Cultural Forum on the premises of the State Hermitage’s General Staff Building (access for professional experts and guest-list visitors only).


Why the “Man from the moon”?

It is still unclear how the islanders could have come up with an idea that Nikolai Miklouho-Maclay had arrived from the moon. They called him “kaaram tamo”, meaning “the moon man” (“kaaram” meaning the moon and “tamo”, the man). But they were well aware that it was Russia where he actually came from. It is highly likely that the scientist himself misinterpreted their words due to a lack of knowledge of the local language. He translated “kaaram tamo” as “the moon man” (Nikolai Miklouho-Maclay. Op. cit., p. 635), which in fact stood for a “man with the moonlight-coloured skin”. “Kaaram tamo” literally means a “moon-skinned man” or a “fair-skinned man” in contrast to the Papuans’ dark skin. If local inhabitants want to indicate where a man has come from or where he/she lives, they will always put the word “tamo” first and only then (not before!) the name of the place itself. “Tamo Bongu”, for instance, means a man from Bongu, while “tamo russ” denotes a man from Russia. The latter was often used to describe Miklouho-Maclay.  “The man from the moon”, however, would be expressed not as “kaaram tamo” but as “tamo kaaram”.

What is more, the moon is seen by local inhabitants as something small and easy to measure by hand. As one of the old stories goes, the Moon once descended heedlessly from the sky and got too close to the earth. A woman caught it, put it into a clay pot and, with its help, cooked food without any fire.  But she lost sight of it, and the moon managed to escape from the pot. It sat on a branch of a tree for some time and then made its way back to the sky, where it is still now. This story offers another proof that the islanders could not associate the moon with an inhabitable place. 

How to get access to the premiere:

  Send us an email with the word “PREMIERE” at 

  Attach your business card or a link to your profile in social media.

  Briefly explain why you want to visit the premiere.   

  In case of approval, wait for a follow-up email with an invitation. 

We would like to express our gratitude to SONY for their filmmaking equipment.