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Envisioning 2001 Without HAL: Douglas Trumbull and Michael Benson on Re-Discovered Early Storyboards for 2001: A Space Odyssey


Join us for a live conversation with visual effects legend and director Douglas Trumbull, and Michael Benson, author of Space Odyssey: Stanley Kubrick, Arthur C. Clarke, and the Making of a Masterpiece, about recently re-discovered early storyboard drawings for 2001: A Space Odyssey in the Museum’s collection. The detailed drawings depict a pivotal scene from an early draft of the screenplay, in which astronaut Frank Poole leaves the Discovery in a space pod to conduct a repair on the ship’s exterior, with disastrous results.

The drawings date from the summer of 1965, and were made by Los Angeles-based production company Graphic Films. The storyboards make evident the wide-ranging creative role played by Graphic Films, which was originally commissioned by Kubrick to provide scientific advice and create concept art for the moon-landing sequence. At the time, the screenplay for 2001 was still evolving, and HAL, the artificially intelligent antagonist whose actions were central to the story, had yet to emerge as a character. Trumbull and Benson will discuss Graphic Films (Trumbull’s work with the company provided his entree to Stanley Kubrick); the development of the narrative of 2001; and more. A video compilation of the storyboard drawings will be presented during the event.


Please RSVP here. Instructions for joining the live event will be sent by email.

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