Hot on the heels of another whale-centric film debuting in NYC this weekend, the first trailer for "Big Miracle" (formerly known as "Everybody Loves Whales") has hit online. The movie tells the true story of three stranded gray whales that were caught in an ice pack in 1988 off the northern coast of Alaska — and the amazing media attention and resulting collaboration by international governments to free them. 


Dubbed "Operation Breakthrough" (and costing an estimated $1 million), the rescue is largely credited with changing people's attitudes toward whales. 


"I am gratified that the California gray whales have been released to the open sea," President Ronald Reagan said at the time. "The human persistence and determination by so many individuals on behalf of these whales shows mankind's concern for the environment."


The film, which stars John Krasinski, Drew Barrymore, and Ted Danson, is slated for a Feb. 3, 2012 release. Check out the trailer below. 


Michael d'Estries ( @michaeldestries ) covers science, technology, art, and the beautiful, unusual corners of our incredible world.

Krasinski, Barrymore save the whales in 'Big Miracle' trailer
Film tells the true story of three stranded whales in Alaska and the international effort to save them.