|For the myth in GTA SA, see Conspiracy Theory (book).|
In the 1960s, the United States and the Soviet Union were engaged in the Space Race, an undeclared contest to display technological advancements and dominance in spaceflight tech. Each nation tried to get "firsts," such as the Soviet Union launching Sputnik 1, the first artificial satellite. The United States would eventually triumph over the Soviets in July 1969, where they operated Apollo 11, the first successful manned mission to the Moon. This achievement ultimately leads to the end of the Space Race with Americans and Soviets eventually cooperating in events such as the Apollo-Soyuz Test Project.
Primarily in the United States, there exists a fringe conspiracy claiming that the Apollo 11 Moon landing was actually a hoax orchestrated by the US government as a propaganda move. The most popular Moon landing denial theory claims that the scene was recorded inside a custom made film studio, but this has never been proven to be true. Moon landing denial has become a common theme in popular culture; satirizing the theory itself and conspiracy theorists in general, while believers in the theory continue to be a small portion of the US population.
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City
In GTA Vice City, there is a studio on Prawn Island that is full of props resembling those, which were seen in the Moon landing of 1969, supporting the idea of the theory. Some of these props include a lunar landing module and a backdrop of the Moon's landscape.
It was later believed to be the set of some feature films. However, this was later discarded.
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas
In GTA San Andreas, the theory is referenced in Area 53 when an unnamed trucker calls in and claims "I agree with you about the Moon. We never landed on the Moon. It’s such a good fake." From the dialogue, it's assumed that the show's host, Marvin Trill, also believes in the theory but this is never explicitly stated.
Grand Theft Auto V
In the film studio in GTA V, there are actors dressed up as astronauts. This could be another possible reference to the conspiracy theory.