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Zoe Saldana, Stephen Hawking Save a Cat, Learn About Quantum Physics

Learning about quantum physics is, for most people, downright daunting. That fact seems doubly true if learning about quantum physics — quickly! — is the only way to save Simon Pegg’s cat from a box that’s sucked it into another dimension. Unfortunately for Zoe Saldana, this is the exact scenario she finds herself in in the above clip. But with some help from Star Trek co-star John Cho, as well as Keanu Reeves and Paul Rudd (the latter two stars in voice only), she still manages to save Pegg’s cat learn about quantum physics.

The video, which turns the classic quantum conundrum, Schrödinger’s cat, into a pretty hilarious little sitcom, is the second entry into a video series that began with “Quantum Chess,” a short that starred Rudd and Hawking. In the first video, Rudd and Hawking squared off in a game of quantum chess (which is real and utilizes “quantum moves”), and saw Rudd save the world thanks to his ability to understand quantum physics.

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The new entry, “Quantum is Calling,” features Saldana (Uhura in Star Trek), on a sudden mission to rescue Pegg’s cat — named Schrödinger — after it falls into a box and is zapped into another dimension. Saldana quickly panics, and attempts to enlist the help of Rudd (who has the best caller ID of all time). With Rudd unavailable however, Saldana is forced to turn to the second smartest person she knows, Stephen Hawking, for help. (Cho comes in later, but he doesn’t help matters much, although he is an observer…)

“Quantum is Calling” was directed by Alex Winter (Bill from Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure) and was made in collaboration between Caltech’s Institute of Quantum Information and Matter, Kavli Nanoscience, Trouper Productions, and Cinestar (Saldana’s own production company and YouTube Channel). And while the comedy of the video can’t be denied (Rudd ID screen), it doesn’t seem to really lay out a simple explanation of the Schrödinger’s cat thought experiment. If you want to dork out on that in a bit more detail, this video by MinutePhysics should clear some things up. Also, there’s this behind-the-scenes video from “Quantum is Calling” if you didn’t get enough John Cho up top:

What do you think about this star-studded quantum physics video? Were the concepts behind Schrödinger’s cat made more or less confusing after watching this? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

Images: Cinestar

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