There's no doubt about it. 2015's Everest is an amazing piece of work. The film brings to life the emotions and action surrounding the real-life tragic events in 1996 and provides a grueling and heartbreaking look into the Mount Everest climb that claimed the lives of eight mountaineers over 20 years ago. The movie is pretty realistic — and at times hard to watch — but it didn't even capture all the details of the event.
After watching the movie, we — like so many other people who were intrigued and saddened by the Everest disaster — were curious about what else went down on that fateful trip that is still considered the worst loss of life ever to occur on a mountain on a single day.
We found 11 true events that didn't make it into the movie.
1. Rob Hall climbed Everest a whopping five times
Rob Hall (Jason Clarke) actually summited Everest five times before he died on the mountain in 1996, more than any other climber (at that time) who wasn't a Nepalese Sherpa. Hall's body remains on the mountain to this day.
2. Jan Arnold, Rob Hall's wife, was supposed to be on the '96 climb
Rob Hall and his wife, Jan Arnold (Keira Knightley), climbed Everest together in 1993. She would have gone again in 1996 but instead stayed at home in New Zealand because she was pregnant. Two months after Hall tragically died, she gave birth to their daughter, Sarah.
3. Body nicknamed "Green Boots"
The above body is commonly referred to as "Green Boots" and also serves as a trail marker. This corpse is believed to be that of Tsewang Paljor, who was a member of the first team of Indians to summit Everest from the northeastern passageway. He was one of the eight who died on May 10, 1996.
4. More than 250 bodies on Everest
Because conditions are so dangerous, and there is so little oxygen near the top of the mountain, if someone dies while climbing Everest, there is no safe way to bring the body down. Most deaths are due to an avalanche or falling off the mountain.
5. Beck Weathers' eye surgery
In the film, climber Beck Weathers (Josh Brolin) begins to get blurred vision and can only see a couple of feet in front of him. His vision problems in real life were because of overexposure to ultraviolet radiation on his eyes that had recently undergone radial keratotomy surgery to correct his myopia or nearsightedness.
Originally published Sept. 2015. Updated August 2017.
6. Beck Weathers lost more than just his nose
After being exposed in the harsh and freezing blizzard, Weathers suffered terrible frostbite. He lost the bottom half of his right arm and all of the fingers on his left hand. He also lost parts of both his feet. His nose had to be amputated but was later reconstructed from tissue from his ear and forehead.
7. Author Jon Krakauer wishes he'd never climbed Everest
In the film, Jon Krakauer (Michael Kelly) is a journalist invited to climb Everest so he can write an article for Outside magazine. In a recent interview, Krakauer said this to The Huffington Post, "Climbing Mount Everest was the biggest mistake I've ever made in my life. I wish I'd never gone. I suffered for years of PTSD, and still suffer from what happened. I'm glad I wrote a book about it. But, you know, if I could go back and relive my life, I would never have climbed Everest."
8. Rob Hall's body found by Imax expedition
Less than two weeks after the deaths of the eight explorers on Everest, a team of filmmakers from Imax discovered Rob Hall's body on their way to the summit. They were there to shoot the 1998 documentary, also called Everest.
9. Beck Weathers not the first helicopter rescue that day
Because of the lack of oxygen, helicopters cannot fly safely up to the top of Everest. The situation was so desperate, however, Nepalese Lt. Col. Madan Khatri Chhetri took the risk and managed to evacuate a climber named Makulu Gau ahead of Weathers. The helicopter was able to take only one passenger at a time and successfully returned to rescue Weathers.
10. Home of a goddess
Buddhists believe the Goddess of Inexhaustible Giving, Miyolangsangma, lives at the top of Mount Everest. Some climbers pray to her for a safe trip up and down the mountain.
11. 2014 Avalanche during shooting preparation
On April 18, 2014, an avalanche killed 16 people on Everest, twice as many as the 1996 disaster that took eight lives. The filming of Everest had to be put on hold until conditions were safe.