Lost Stanley Kubrick-Edited Footage for 2001: A Space Odyssey Found
12.21.10 by BJSprecher
It has long been believed that 19 minutes of footage trimmed from Stanley Kubrick's original cut of 2001: A Space Odyssey had been destroyed at the direction of Kubrick, himself, but now there is new hope that the footage has not been lost and that it may one day find its way onto a 2001 DVD release. According to multiple sources, director and visual effects pioneer Douglas Trumbull revealed during a recent screening of 2001 in Toronoto that 17 minutes worth of Kubrick's cut footage had been found by Warner Bros. (WB) in its vault located within a salt mine in Kansas and that the negatives had been perfectly preserved. Trumbull apparently did not speculate on what WB plans to do with the footage, but a find of this signficance will surely find its way to the masses in one form or another eventually.
Since none of Kubrick's trimmed footage was previously known to exist, it's impossible to positively ascertain exactly what might be contained, but Kubrick historian Thomas E. Brown compiled a detailed list of what the footage might contain based upon viewer recollections and published materials about the movie. In his article "2001's Pre- and Post-Premiere Edits," Brown writes:
The material edited before the April 2 premiere appears to be: Black and white interviews with leading scientists about the possibility of life elsewhere in the universe, the text of which appears in Agel's book The Making of Kubrick's 2001. Floyd's [William Sylvester] use of the picturephone to buy a bushbaby from Macy's for Squirt [Vivian Kubrick, uncredited]...scenes showing life in the moonbase including a children's painting class featuring Kubrick's two daughters...and various technical details of life aboard Discovery.... A scene or scenes from The Dawn of Man.... The beginning of Bowman's [Keir Dullea] EVA (extra-vehicular activity)...
You can read more about what might have been cut from 2001: A Space Odyssey by reading Brown's full article. Also, check out this introductory featurette for Trumbull's new documentary about the making of Kubrick's sci-fi masterpiece, 2001: Beyond the Infinite, where he talks about some of the other 2001-related discoveries that have recently been made.