While certainly no L.A. or New York by cinematic standards, the city of Houston cemented its place in movie history when Tom Hanks uttered the now famous phrase “Ah, Houston, we have a problem,” during the 1995 summer blockbuster Apollo 13. To the less “space-tially” aware moviegoer, Houston might seem like an odd word choice for the most emblematic line in a hit Hollywood movie. The film, however, is based on true events and Houston is the proud home of NASA’s Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center (JSC), housing the actual mission control center that operated the real life Apollo 13 mission in 1970. Though the film is praised in large part for its technical accuracy, Hanks’ line was actually adapted from the flight transcripts for artistic purposes. The original sentence was “Houston, we’ve had a problem,” and was spoken by Kevin Bacon’s character Jack Swigert. The change was made to keep the line in the present, thus making the moment more dramatic, and attributed to Hanks’ lead character to enhance the significance.Although the Apollo 13 mission, and its resulting movie, may have put the Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center on the mainstream map, its history is storied by many famous missions both of epic success and heartbreaking disappointment. The Mission Control Center at JSC has been the home base for operational controls for all United States human space missions since Gemini IV, in 1965, maintaining the primary duty of coordinating and monitoring human space travel in our country. While the Apollo 13 mission’s safe return marks one of the site’s greatest memories, the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster stands as its most tragic. The vessel disintegrated shortly after its takeoff from Kennedy Space Center to the dismay and horror of helpless mission controllers. Memorial services were held at the Jonson Space Center, where President Reagan addressed the nation from its grounds in 1986.Through thick and thin, triumph and tragedy, NASA’s Johnson Space Center is at the heart of both Houston’s and our great nation’s history.