2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)

 ●  English ● 3 hrs 8 mins

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This fast-paced, futuristic sci-fi adventure set at a time during which humankind has greatly advanced technologies that can enable space travel. Sometime in the distant past, someone or something nudged evolution by placing a monolith on Earth (presumably elsewhere throughout the universe as well). Evolution then enabled humankind to reach the moon's surface, where yet another monolith is found, one that signals the monolith placers that humankind has evolved that far. Now a race begins between computers (HAL) and human (Bowman) to reach the monolith placers. The winner will achieve the next step in evolution, whatever that may be.
See Storyline (May Contain Spoilers)

Cast: Gary Lockwood, Keir Dullea

Crew: Stanley Kubrick (Director), Geoffrey Unsworth (Director of Photography), Richard Strauss (Music Director)

Rating: U (India)

Genres: Adventure, Mystery, Sci-Fi

Release Dates: 15 May 1968 (India)

Tagline: The Ultimate Trip.

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Did you know? Originally, Stanley Kubrick had Stuart Freeborn create a primitive but more human-like makeup for the actors playing early man, but he couldn't find a way to photograph them in full length without getting an X-rating from the MPAA, since they had to be naked. So Kubrick went with the hairy monkey model instead. With the exception of two baby chimpanzees, all were played by humans in costume. Freeborn and his wife Kathleen Freeborn used comic actor Ronnie Corbett as a makeup model, but he did not appear in the final film. Daniel Richter, who plays the ape moon watcher, choreographed most of these scenes. Early viewers of the movie wondered where Kubrick obtained such well-trained apes. It was later joked that "2001" lost the Best Makeup Academy Award to John Chambers for Planet of the Apes (1968) because the judges didn't realize the 2001 apes were really people, but there was no nomination list at all, as the award was not created until 1981--Chambers' award was merely honorary. Read More
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Film Type:
Feature Film
Language:
English
Colour Info:
Color
Sound Mix:
4-Track Stereo, 6-Track 70mm
Frame Rate:
24 fps
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1
Stereoscopy:
No
Taglines:
The Ultimate Trip.
An epic drama of adventure and exploration.
Let the Awe and Mystery of a Journey Unlike Any Other Begin.
Goofs:
Character Error
Bowman inhales deeply before attempting to re-enter the ship from the pod. Arthur C. Clarke in an interview later noted that this is incorrect. Bowman should have exhaled, as the vacuum of space would have damaged his lungs had they been full of air.

Character Error
HAL's verbal description of his chess move (Q-B3), given what he shows on the screen, are from Frank's point of view. This is often regarded as an error, since in descriptive chess notation, the rank is described from the point of view of the player making the move. It should be Q-B6. HAL's errors can be considered either script goofs or clues revealing his internal conflict, since he is supposed to be infallible.

Continuity
When Dr Floyd is being briefed during the shuttle ride to the monolith, he is told that the surrounding soil was excavated on all sides. The photo shows a circular excavation and the speaker makes a circular motion around the monolith with his hand to emphasize his point. However, when the team arrives at the crater, the excavation is rectangular, not circular.

Continuity
In the first view from the space station looking at the approaching ship, the stars are moving clockwise, so the station must be turning clockwise from the ship's point of view. But in the next shot, the station is turning counter-clockwise from the ship's point of view.

Continuity
As Dave Bowman climbs into HAL's logic center to shut him off, the seal on his suit's left hand is broken and the glove separates from the suit (due to the swing). The glove is reattached once he enters the logic center.

Continuity
In the Pan Am lunar shuttle, we see the Clavius Moon Base approach through the viewing window of the pilot's cockpit in a view like an airplane approach. In the next shot, we see the exterior of the craft, and the cockpit is shown pointing straight up towards the black sky as it lands on the landing gear beneath the craft. It would be impossible for the pilots to view the Clavius approach from the cockpit if landing with reverse thrust engines. All they would see is the sky straight above, and it would be relatively still from their point of view.

Continuity
The bone Moon-Watcher uses to beat the enemy ape is a femur (upper leg bone), as indicated by the sideways projecting "arm" with a ball at the end. However, the bone shown rotating in the air is a tibia (main bone of the lower leg), as indicated by its blunt ends.

Continuity
The phase of the Earth reverses while the moon bus is en-route from Clavius to Tycho.

Continuity
The scene where Dr. Floyd talks with Russian scientists in the space station is shot from two angles. One of the seated women has her legs crossed in all the shots from one angle and uncrossed in all the shots from the other angle.

Continuity
The quantity of food changes twice while Bowman and Poole are eating.

Errors in Geography
In the Dawn of Man scene, there are Tapirs roaming freely around the primates. There is not fossilized evidence of tapirs existing in Africa, but there are fossilized Tapirs in South America and Malaysia. Along with the Winter section of the scene, the film could not be hinting at the birth of man occurring in Africa.

Continuity
When the spaceship is docking at the station, the ship and the station are rotating at the same speed as can be seen in the scenes from the ship's point of view. But in the exterior, zoomed out shot of both of them, they are clearly rotating at radically-different speeds.

Errors in Geography
Earth should appear closer to the horizon at Clavius than at Tycho, not vice versa.

Factual Mistake
In the first part of the film, when one of the small pod spaceships is landing on the moon, we see dust billowing up from the landing pad. Billowing is caused by the collision of dust and air molecules. But since there is no air on the moon, the dust would not have billowed, and should have been sprayed outward in all directions.

Factual Mistake
When the astronauts on the moon are shown walking toward the unearthed sentinel, they are walking normally, as if on earth. The moon's gravity is one-sixth that of earth; hence, they should have appeared to "bounce" a bit when walking, as was seen in the later Apollo moon landings.

Factual Mistake
On each of the monolith's first two appearances, the upward camera shot shows the sun/moon or sun/earth in line, artistically above the structure. In both cases, however, it's early morning on earth or the moon, and the sun should actually be on the horizon.

Revealing Mistakes
To come up with a convincing effect for the floating pen in the shuttle sequence, Kubrick decided to simply use a pen that was taped to a sheet of glass suspended in front of the camera (in fact, the shuttle attendant can be seen to "pull" the pen off the glass when she takes hold of it). If you watch carefully around the upper left corner of the screen just before she catches the pen, you can see the glass briefly reflecting light as it rotates to give the floating effect to the pen. (On the BluRay release, the sheet is clearly visible through most of the scene. Even swirl marks and what looks like a palm-print can be seen.)

Revealing Mistakes
When Dave blows his way into the emergency hatch using the explosive bolts and pressure in the pod, the pod remains static, in reality, the pod would have gone tumbling into space.

Revealing Mistakes
As the moon shuttle lands it kicks up swirling clouds of dust. In the vacuum of space the dust would shoot out straight, as with the real-life Apollo Lunar Modules.

Revealing Mistakes
While Poole and Bowman are watching the BBC 12 interview, the right flat screen is slightly ahead (about two frames). This is due to both screens being rear-projected film clips from two projectors. An actual video feed would be completely synchronized.

Revealing Mistakes
When the Earth Shuttle stewardess enters the passenger cabin and moves towards Heywood Floyd, she stumbles on the walkway. The nature of the misstep reveals that she is not weightless.

Revealing Mistakes
When Dave goes out to repair the AE-35 unit the first time, he parks the pod away from Discovery and rotates it so that the door faces the spacecraft. During the rotation, the lights of the pod reflect on the left side of the screen.

Continuity
At the end of the film, Dave uses the last remaining pod to get a closer look at the huge monolith. The hangar bay door that opens is the one in the center. The center bay was from the pod that killed Frank and was drifted into space. The bay door to the left (outside perspective, looking at the Discovery) was from the pod Dave used to retrieve Frank's body. The pod became useless upon explosive re-entry of Dave in the Discovery, so the only left pod should be the one at the right bay door and not the center door.

Character Error
While Dave gets outside the Discovery in attempt to retrieve Frank's body, HAL kills the hibernating crew, a shoot of the hangar bay shows the door to the left open. When Dave is back in the Discovery and away to shut down HAL, the same door is closed.

Continuity
After HAL has been disabled by Dave, Dr Heywood Floyd gives his prerecorded message to the crew. However, his name is misspelled on the TV monitor as "Haywood" Floyd.
Trivia:
Although it's commonly believed that the famous "jump cut" is from the bone being tossed in the air to a ship floating in space, it is in fact not a spaceship, it's a nuclear device circling the earth. So the bone being used as the "first" murder weapon is thrown to the "ultimate" weapon. Originally the "star child" was to detonate this device and all the other devices that were circling the earth. Stanley Kubrick decided against the ending as it was too similar to the end of his previous film Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964), where nuclear bombs are exploded.

HAL sings "Daisy Bell" (or "A Bicycle Built for Two") as he is shut down. One of the earliest pieces of electronic music, this was the first song ever programmed into a computer to be played back using a simulation of speech synthesis. The machine was an IBM 7094 that was located at Bell Labs in 1961. Furthermore, the lyrics include the phrase "I'm half crazy."

Just like in Arthur C. Clarke's short story 'The Sentinel', the finding of the monolith on the moon would initially be the film's climax. This eventually became the kick-off for the movie's second half. But even during production, the ending of the movie was still under constant revision. Stanley Kubrick initially planned to show extra-terrestrials, but found out that the production's budget was quickly running out. He finally decided that it would be better to not physically show the aliens at all, stating that "you don't show God".

One of Stanley Kubricks additions to the screenplay which Arthur C. Clarke did not like was HAL's ability to read the astronauts' lips when they are inside the pod. Years later, he admitted that Kubrick had been right all along, after learning that at the time, computers were being developed with the ability to read lips.

In the sequence in which Bowman recovers Poole's body with the pod, the camera was running at four times normal speed so that the resulting footage would be in slow-motion, giving a slow, "drifting in space" look. That means the soft contact of the pod's arms with Poole's body was actually rather rough, and as a result, the stunt man doubling for Poole was badly bruised by the end of the takes.

At the end of the film, the only spacesuit that was never used is the blue one. In 2010 (1984), the blue suit is missing its helmet, apparently because the producers thought that Dave used it in 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) when disabling HAL. Dave is actually wearing a green helmet, from the green suit which was stowed inside the emergency airlock.

Despite its G-rating, there are five on-screen murders: a man-ape, Frank Poole, and the three hibernating astronauts killed by HAL. The dialogue also includes the words "hell" three times and "damn" twice.

Arthur C. Clarke and Stanley Kubrick disagreed on what HAL's birthday should be. Kubrick wanted HAL to be about the age of a child, so his death would have more emotional impact. Clarke insisted such an old computer would not be used for an important mission. In the book, HAL's age was four years (12 January 1997), while in the movie it was nine years (12 January 1992). This disagreement resurfaced nearly thirty years later when film critic Roger Ebert held a birthday party for HAL 9000 by screening 2001 in Urbana, Illinois in 1997, the date and place of HAL's birth in the novel (Ebert was also born in Urbana). Clarke and Kubrick were both invited. Clarke accepted his invitation and made an appearance at the festivities via satellite, but Kubrick declined, stating that they missed HAL's birthday in 1992. Another inconsistency in this scene is the name of HAL's first instructor. It is Mr. Langley in this movie but is Dr. Chandra in all other books and movies in this series. Since HAL is saying all this while being shut down, this could be interpreted as a result of memory failure.

Stanley Kubrick was very well read. It is rumored that the image of the star-child came to him from the "Spirit of the Earth" in Percy Bysshe Shelley's "Prometheus Unbound": "Within the orb itself, Pillowed upon its alabaster arms, Like to a child o'erwearied with sweet toil, On its own folded wings and wavy hair The Spirit of the Earth is laid asleep..."

In the premier screening of the film, 241 people walked out of the theater, including Rock Hudson who said "Will someone tell me what the hell this is about?" Arthur C. Clarke once said, "If you understand '2001' completely, we failed. We wanted to raise far more questions than we answered."

Stanley Kubrick worked for several months with effects technicians to come up with a convincing effect for the floating pen in the shuttle sequence. After trying many different techniques, without success, Kubrick decided to simply use a pen that was taped to a sheet of glass and suspended in front of the camera. In fact, the shuttle attendant can be seen to "pull" the pen off the glass when she takes hold of it.

The last movie made about men on the moon before Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walked there in real life. 40 years later, conspiracy theorists insist that this is not a coincidence, claiming that all footage of Armstrong's voyage was a hoax film directed by Stanley Kubrick using leftover scenes and props from this movie.

The movie was not a financial success during the first weeks of its theatrical run. MGM was already planning to pull it back from theaters, when they were persuaded by several theatre owners to keep showing the film. Many theater owners had observed increasing numbers of young adults attending the film, who were especially enthusiastic about watching the 'Star Gate' sequence under the influence of psychotropic drugs. This helped the film to become a financial success in the end, despite the many negative reactions it received in the beginning.

The sun and the crescent moon aligned with each other (in the opening shot) was a symbol of Zoroastrianism, an ancient Persian religion that predated Buddhism and Christianity and was based on the teachings of the prophet Zoroaster (also known as Zarathustra). This particular alignment symbolized the eternal struggle between light and darkness. Appropriately enough, the famous "2001: A Space Odyssey Theme" is from "Also Sprach Zarathustra" (Thus Spake Zarathustra), the symphonic poem by Richard Strauss, based on a book by Friedrich Nietzsche, which contained his famous declaration "God is dead". One can assume, given Stanley Kubrick's working methods, that none of this was accidental.

There is no dialogue in the first 25 minutes of the movie (ending when a stewardess speaks at 25:38), nor in the last 23 minutes (excluding end credits). With these two lengthy sections and other shorter ones, there are around 88 dialogue-free minutes in the movie.

Frank Miller, who plays the mission control voice, was a member of the US Air Force in real life, and a real mission controller. He was hired because his voice was the most authentic the producers could find for the role. Inexperienced and nervous, he could not keep from tapping his foot during recording sessions, and the tapping sound repeatedly came through on the audio tracks; Stanley Kubrick folded up a towel, put it under Miller's feet, and told him to tap to his heart's content.

According to Arthur C. Clarke, Stanley Kubrick wanted to get an insurance policy from Lloyd's of London to protect himself against losses in the event that extraterrestrial intelligence were discovered before the movie was released. Lloyd's refused. Carl Sagan commented, "In the mid-1960s, there was no search being performed for extraterrestrial intelligence, and the chances of accidentally stumbling on extraterrestrial intelligence in a few years' period was extremely small. Lloyd's of London missed a good bet".

The initial idea for the alien device that would eventually become the black monolith involved a transparent screen, which would show the apes how to use objects as tools and weapons. Arthur C. Clarke later dismissed it as 'too naive'. Also, the HAL 9000 computer started out as a mobile robot, but as Clarke feared that this view of artificial intelligence would become hopelessly outdated in the coming decades, the omnipresent red eye was conceived.

The only Oscar won by the film was for special visual effects. It was awarded to Stanley Kubrick - and was his sole win from 13 nominations. However, while Kubrick designed much of the look of the film and its effects, many of the technicians involved felt it was wrong for him to receive the sole credit. Following this controversy, the Academy tightened it eligibility rules.

Stanley Kubrick cut 19 minutes from the film's original 158-minute running time after its New York premiere, mostly to speed up the pacing.

An early draft of the script had narration.

Rock band Pink Floyd was at one point approached to perform music for the film. However they turned it down due to other commitments. Yet they retain a connection with the film: much like The Wizard of Oz (1939) and "Dark Side of the Moon", it is said that Pink Floyd's song "Echoes" from the album "Meddle" can be perfectly synchronized with the "Jupiter & Beyond the Infinite" segment of the film. See links section for details.

According to Katharina Kubrick, Stanley Kubrick provided the breathing heard in the spacesuits.

The joke working title, "How the Solar System was Won", reflected the original idea for the film. Just as How the West Was Won (1962) was a series of short stories spanning decades, 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) was going to be a series of stories showing explorations on many planets and moons, ending with "The Sentinel" showing the uncovering of the monolith on the Moon, which was the first contact with extra terrestrials. A genuine working title was "Voyage Beyond the Stars". When Fantastic Voyage (1966) was released, Stanley Kubrick reportedly so disliked that film that he did not want his film to sound anything like it. In the end, "2001" was chosen as it is the first year of both the 21st century and the 3rd millennium. In 1999 Arthur C. Clarke held a press conference in which he said he was dismayed that so many people (including college professors and journalists) were incorrectly calling 2000 the beginning of the century.

The entire film contains only 205 special effects shots, compared to 350 in Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977) and over 2,200 such shots in Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith (2005).

Poole (Gary Lockwood) was filmed wearing a helmet on the bridge of Discovery because Stanley Kubrick initially had doubts over the scientific possibility of a person's survival for even an instant in a vacuum; however, data published at the time indicated that such survival was indeed possible, which allowed the Emergency Air Lock re-entry sequence to be filmed and for scenes to be shot of the astronauts without their helmets.

According to Douglas Trumbull, the total footage shot was some 200 times the final length of the film.

Originally intended as a road show release, with Overture, Intermission, and Exit music (all with curtain warmers) and a 35mm b/w prologue of interview with experts on the possibilities of extra terrestrial life. Despite the fact that the Overture, Intermission, and Exit Music were not used, the film still went out as a roadshow release, and still had an intermission. When Stanley Kubrick learned this, he not only ordered where the intermission took place, but had his film's composer record specific music for the intermission, and requested that the theater be plunged into darkness for a minute before the film restarted.

After seeing a documentary called To the Moon and Beyond (not listed on IMDb) at the 1964 New York World's Fair, Stanley Kubrick hired one of its special effects technicians, Douglas Trumbull, to work on this film. Trumbull developed a process called Slitscan photography to create the wild, kaleidoscopic images Bowman experiences going through the Stargate. It involved moving the camera rapidly past different pieces of lighted artwork, with the camera shutter held open to allow for a streaking effect. The overall effect gave the audience the sense of plunging into the infinite. Trunbull was later hired by ABC to produce the famous opening sequence for the ABC "Movie of the Week" using the same slitscan technique used for 2001.

Aside from the film's music, no sound is heard in the space sequences. This is because technically in space, there is no sound.

Originally, HAL was to be called Athena and have a female voice. According to Keir Dullea (Dave Bowman), Nigel Davenport and Martin Balsam were hired and later replaced before Douglas Rain finally landed the role of HAL. Davenport was actually on-set in England during filming, reading HAL's lines off-camera so that Dullea and Gary Lockwood could react to them. Apparently, Stanley Kubrick thought that Davenport's English accent was too distracting, so after a few weeks he dismissed him and for the remainder of the shoot HAL's lines were read by an assistant director who, according to Dullea, had a Cockney accent so thick that lines like "Better take a stress pill, Dave" came out like "Better tyke a stress pill, Dyve". Later Balsam was hired and recorded HAL's voice in New York, but again when Kubrick heard his lines he wasn't satisfied, so he finally got Rain to re-record everything during post-production. Rain recorded in Canada, speaking his lines barefoot with his feet resting on a pillow to get the relaxed tone. For the sequel, Peter Hyams' 2010 (1984), the opposite process was used: Rain recorded all of HAL's dialogue during pre-production prior to principal photography. That's why, to this day, Dullea and Rain have never actually spoken directly to each other or met in person.

The main Discovery set was built by aircraft manufacturer Vickers-Armstrong inside a 12-meter by two-meter drum designed to rotate at five km per hour. It cost $750,000.

It is reported that Stanley Kubrick and Arthur C. Clarke watched an enormous number of science fiction films in preparation for creating this movie and Kubrick himself acknowledged the influence of producer George Pal's films. Pal's Conquest of Space (1955) provided several plot points throughout the movie.

In honor of the book and movie, NASA named a Mars orbiter: 2001 Mars Odyssey. This was not the first time NASA had a connotation with the film; the Apollo 13 command module's callsign was Odyssey during the ill-fated mission.

Evidence of Stanley Kubrick's attention to detail: there are visible replacement instructions for the explosive bolts in the ejection apparatus of the pods.

The chess position and moves that we see are from a game played in 1910 in Hamburg between two undistinguished players named Roesch and Schlage. The computer claims that the final position is a checkmate in two moves. Actually, white is not obliged to play the move that HAL suggests (Bxf3), so we have a checkmate in three moves. Another result of Stanley Kubrick's fondness for chess is the character Smyslov, named after a Russian champion.

Originally, Stanley Kubrick had Stuart Freeborn create a primitive but more human-like makeup for the actors playing early man, but he couldn't find a way to photograph them in full length without getting an X-rating from the MPAA, since they had to be naked. So Kubrick went with the hairy monkey model instead. With the exception of two baby chimpanzees, all were played by humans in costume. Freeborn and his wife Kathleen Freeborn used comic actor Ronnie Corbett as a makeup model, but he did not appear in the final film. Daniel Richter, who plays the ape moon watcher, choreographed most of these scenes. Early viewers of the movie wondered where Kubrick obtained such well-trained apes. It was later joked that "2001" lost the Best Makeup Academy Award to John Chambers for Planet of the Apes (1968) because the judges didn't realize the 2001 apes were really people, but there was no nomination list at all, as the award was not created until 1981--Chambers' award was merely honorary.

If you consider the relative positions of Bowman when he first arrives in the suite, when he is next standing in the room, when he is in the bathroom, when he is at the table, and when he is in the bed, these points form a star.

Stanley Kubrick initially approached Arthur C. Clarke by saying that he wanted to make "the proverbial good science-fiction movie". Clarke suggested that his story "The Sentinel" (1948) about finding an alien artifact on the moon, would provide a suitable premise. Clarke had written it for a BBC competition, but it didn't even make the shortlist. The movie's opening scene has elements in common with Clarke's story "Encounter at Dawn," and the ending is arguably related to his beloved novel "Childhood's End." The screenplay was written primarily by Kubrick and the novel primarily by Clarke, each working simultaneously and also providing feedback to the other. As the story went through many revisions, changes in the novel were taken over into the screenplay and vice versa. The official records say that the screenplay was written in 58 days (13 October 1965-9 December 1965). Shooting began with the "Monolith on the Moon" scene on 29 December 1965. It was undecided whether film or novel would be released first; in the end it was the film. Kubrick was to have been credited as second author of the novel, but in the end was not. It is believed that Kubrick deliberately withheld his approval of the novel as to not hurt the release of the film.

According to Stanley Kubrick biographer John Baxter, Kubrick decided to use the Sinar Front Projection system for the desert backdrops during the animal/ape scenes. This method was selected because rear projection of the desert scenes would have proved too murky for Super Panavision. The use of the Sinar system explains why in the scene where the leopard is sitting next to the dead zebra (in reality a painted dead horse) the leopard's eyes glow a bright color. The Sinar system used glass transparencies as backdrops; however, the projectors necessary for this system were so hot that a draft or a breath could crack the glass. As a result, crew members were required to wear face masks, which started a long-persistent rumor that Kubrick had a paranoia of catching infections.

The entire centrifuge section of the Discovery spacecraft was constructed as a single set. It was designed to rotate for shots such as the sequence in which Frank went jogging so that the actor remained on the bottom.

TMA-1 stands for Tycho Magnetic Anomaly-1. The monolith was originally to have been a black tetrahedron; however, it did not reflect light properly. Stanley Kubrick then decided to use a transparent cube, but that proved to be too difficult to use because of the reflections created by the studio lights. Next came a rectangular monolith cast from Lucite that looked unconvincing, and finally the familiar black slab.

Incrementing each letter of "HAL" gives you "IBM". Writer Arthur C. Clarke claimed this was unintentional, and if he had noticed ahead of time, he would have changed it. HAL stands for Heuristic Algorithmic Computer. IBM product placements appear in the movie as well, including the computer panels in the spaceplane that docks with the space station, the forearm control panel on Dave's spacesuit, and the portable viewscreens on which Dave and Frank watch "The World Tonight".

In both the book and film, HAL's creator, Dr Chandra has what is almost certainly a deliberately chosen name. Chandra, as well as being a common Indian surname, is a name of the Hindu lunar deity, and the word for "moon" in Hindi. Dr Chandra's full first name, Sivasubramanian, can be translated as "Dear priest of Shiva". Shiva, the name of a supreme Hindu deity, carries as one of its meanings "the one who admits no imperfection". Therefore Dr Chandra, the creator of a computer believing itself incapable of mistakes has a uniquely appropriate first name. Arthur C. Clarke, who spent much of his life in Sri Lanka (where Hindu is a major religion) would almost certainly have known these meanings.

There is a single dissolve (after Dave uses the emergency airlock and is then seen with the green helmet), all other transitions are jump cuts or action cuts.

HAL 9000 never once says, "Good Morning, Dave," despite this line being one of his most recognized quotations.

By the year 2001, some of the product placements had become outdated. RCA Whirlpool, the maker of the zero-gravity food preparation unit on the moon shuttle, had become Whirlpool. The Bell System had been divested and the long-distance service became AT&T. Pan Am had ceased operations as an international air carrier (in fact, the Whirlpool change had already happened by the time of the film's original release).

Frank Poole and Dave Bowman watch themselves in a television interview on "BBC 12". This was a play on the fact that, at the time of production, there were only BBC channels 1 and 2. The presenter in this scene is Kenneth Kendall, the first newsreader seen on British TV in 1955.

Some of the "Dawn of Man" African sequences used the sounds of wild cats, gorillas and chimpanzees originally recorded for the MGM film Mogambo (1953). The sounds were authentic and actually recorded in locations throughout Africa during the making of "Mogambo" while it was being shot on location there.

The film was originally to have ended just as it had in the book, with Bowman discovering the third monolith on Saturn's moon Japetus. This idea was scrapped, however, because the special effects crew was unable to make convincing-looking rings around Saturn. Effects artist Douglas Trumbull eventually perfected a technique for making the rings after production was completed, and used Saturn's rings to great effect in his directorial debut, Silent Running (1972).

The phrase "See you next Wednesday" is heard for the first time during the scene in which Poole receives birthday greetings from his parents. The phrase would become a trademark of director John Landis who would use it in many of his movies.

The Blue Danube Waltz was not the first piece of classical music intended for the space station sequence. Stanley Kubrick originally set the sequence to the Scherzo from Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy's "Midsummer Night's Dream." Friend of Kubrick's introduced him to the Johann Strauß waltzes during 2001's editing stage, and he re-edited the sequence to The Blue Danube for the final version of the film.

Having calculated that it would take one person 13 years to hand draw and paint all the mattes needed to insert the assorted spacecraft into the starry backgrounds, Kubrick hired 12 other people who then did the job in one year.

Stanley Kubrick previewed 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) for critics, but quickly regretted doing so. Among the mostly indifferent and unfavorable reviews, as noted in the Documentary, 2001: The Making of a Myth (2001) were: "Somewhere between hypnotic and immensely boring"-The New York Times, "A monumentally unimaginative movie"-Harpers, "Space Odyssey fails most gloriously"-Newsday, and "Big, Beautiful but plodding scifi epic. Superb photography major asset to confusing, long-unfolding plot."-Variety.

The silverware used at the station and in the Discovery was designed by renowned Danish architect Arne Jacobsen in 1957 and is still available for sale 50 years after first being produced.

Magazine "poll" places won by this movie: In 2002, named by "Positif" (France) as #1 in both critics' choice and readers' choice of 50 best films in 1952-2002. In 2007, named by American Film Institute as #15 Greatest Movie of All Time, and #1 on AFI list of the 10 greatest "Sci-Fi" films, June 2008. "Open the pod bay doors, HAL," #78 (out of 100) of AFI's best movie quotes. "Dave, my mind is going, I can feel it," #82 of "The 100 Greatest Movie Lines," Premiere, 2007. A poster was #10 of 25 Best Movie Posters Ever, Premiere Magazine.

Keir Dullea (Dave Bowman) and Douglas Rain (HAL 9000) are the only actors to reprise their roles in 2010 (1984).

Although all advertisements, as well as the soundtrack album and the movie's closing credits, claimed that the film was released in Cinerama, it was not shot in the Cinerama process (three synchronized films that would be shown by three synchronized projectors on a huge, curved screen). All Cinerama films from 1963 on were shot by one camera on 65-millimeter film with a special anamorphic lens that would then project a blown-up image onto the curved screen. This film initially did such poor box office that MGM actually considered pulling it from Cinerama release after completion of a 30-day run. The exhibitors began reporting that audiences were not only increasing, but it was noted that some audience members had come to see the film multiple times. It eventually became one of MGM's biggest hits, yet was the only film to be pulled from Cinerama venues while it was still making a good profit. Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer was anxious to release its completed production Ice Station Zebra (1968).

Stanley Kubrick was initially forced by MGM to have Alex North (who had written the score for Kubrick's Spartacus (1960)) compose an original score for the 2001. Kubrick, however, always intended to use classical music for the film. He allowed North to score the first half of the film before informing him they planned to use only sound effects for the second half. It wasn't until he was watching the film at its premier in New York that North discovered that his music had not been used. North later reused themes composed for 2001 in the films The Shoes of the Fisherman (1968), Shanks (1974), and Dragonslayer (1981). North's original score was unheard for 25 years until composer Jerry Goldsmith re-recorded it for Varese Sarabande in 1993. In 2007, however, Intrada, working with Alex North's estate, released North's personal copies of the 1968 recording sessions on CD.

During the trip Bowman takes after leaving the Discovery, some of the images seen are tinted footage of the Isle of Harris in the Outer Hebrides.

The 'buttons' that Dave Bowman presses to arm the depressurization sequence of the pod are the valves of the seat portion of a Martin-Baker aircraft ejection seat's personal equipment connector (PEC). The valves sealed the pilot's air services such as oxygen, pressure jerkin, anti-g suit and air ventilation (depending on the specific aircraft requirements) when the seat was not in use. Below the valves can be seen the brass intercom connections. The component seen could possibly have been salvaged from a series 4 seat fitted to an English Electric Lightning.

In the novel version of 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), Arthur C. Clarke used the Latin spelling J instead of I, for the Saturnian moon of Japetus.

Stanley Kubrick kept the costume of Moonwatcher.

In the original storyboard sketches, the Discovery was to have deployable solar arrays near the aft end of the ship. They were not carried through to the final design as they would have caused problems with the photographic effects, as well as the fact that in reality solar arrays are useless beyond the orbit of Mars.